People walk near the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, March 8, 2020. A total of 6,387 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Italy since the epidemic first broke out here over two weeks ago, the Civil Protection Department said Sunday. In addition, 366 people have died and 622 recovered, Civil Protection Department Chief Angelo Borrelli told reporters at a televised press conference. (Photo by Alberto Lingria/Xinhua)
People walk near the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, March 8, 2020. A total of 6,387 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Italy since the epidemic first broke out here over two weeks ago, the Civil Protection Department said Sunday. In addition, 366 people have died and 622 recovered, Civil Protection Department Chief Angelo Borrelli told reporters at a televised press conference. (Photo by Alberto Lingria/Xinhua)

(dpa) – Italy continued to see slight improvements to its coronavirus infection curve over Easter, experts from the Ministry of Health in Rome announced on Friday evening.

“The curve has reached a plateau in Italy, while in other countries it is still going up. We are seeing a slow decline in Italy,” said health expert Silvio Brusaferro.

The R-value, which measures the rate at which the coronavirus is passed on, is now 0.92. When the value falls below 1, it indicates a slowdown in the incidence of infection.

According to the latest data, the number of new infections reported within seven days per 100,000 inhabitants, the so-called seven-day incidence rate, has fallen below 200.

Brusaferro explained that these were positive signals, even if the figures for the Easter season should still be treated with caution.

The government in Rome had declared the Mediterranean country with its 60 million inhabitants a red zone with strict curfews for several days over Easter.

In the meantime, Italy has reverted to a system of different risk zones, in which the coronavirus rules vary in severity.

Some regions will change to a lower risk level on Monday, the Ministry of Health announced. Lombardy, Piedmont and Emilia-Romagna as well as Tuscany are among the areas that will belong to the medium orange zone.

But in Sardinia the situation has worsened against the trend: the island, which is popular with tourists, will become a red zone from Monday.

On Friday, the authorities in Italy counted almost 19,000 new infections with the coronavirus and more than 700 deaths within 24 hours.

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