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Italy reports 352 COVID-19 deaths on Sunday, 15,104 new cases

·1 min read

MILAN, Dec 20 (Reuters) - Italy reported 352 coronavirus-related deaths on Sunday against 553 the day before, the health ministry said, while the daily tally of new infections decreased to 15,104 from 16,308.

There were 137,420 swab tests carried out in the past day, down from a previous 176,185 the ministry said.

The first Western country hit by the virus, Italy has seen 68,799 COVID-19 fatalities since its outbreak emerged in February, the highest toll in Europe and the fifth-highest in the world. It has also registered more than 1.95 million cases to date.

Patients in hospital with COVID-19 stood at 25,158 on Sunday, down by 206 from the day before. There were 121 new admissions to intensive care units, compared with 160 on Saturday.

The number of intensive care patients decreased by 41 to 2,743 reflecting those who died or were discharged after recovery.

When Italy's second wave of the epidemic was accelerating fast in the first half of November, hospital admissions were rising by around 1,000 per day, while intensive care occupancy was increasing by about 100 per day. (Reporting by Agnieszka Flak. Editing by Jane Merriman)