Italy reports lowest covid daily death toll in 7 months

Drop in number of deaths and new covid-19 infections comes as Italy opens up to international tourists.

Italy reported 93 coronavirus-related deaths on Sunday 16 May, compared to 136 the day before, the health ministry announced, in what is the nation's lowest daily covid death toll in seven months.

The last time that Italy recorded fewer than 100 deaths on a single day was on 23 October last year, when 91 people died, reports Italian newspaper La Stampa.

New covid-19 infections registered on 16 May fell to 5,753 - down from 6,659 the day before - while there was also a decrease in hospitalisations.

The number of people in hospital for covid - not counting those in intensive care - dropped to 12,134 on Sunday (down from 12,493 the day before), reports news agency ANSA.

There were 26 fewer patients in intensive care, with the total number falling to 1,779 (down from 1,805 the day before), the health ministry said.

The fall in the number of fatalities and new covid infections coincides with Italy opening to international tourists, with covid-tested flights from the US and the lifting of quarantine restrictions for visitors from the EU, Israel and the UK.

Writing on Facebook, Italy's foreign minister Luigi Di Maio said the "clearly improving" data "tells us that now is the time to overcome the curfew."

Italy's nightly curfew, in place nationwide from 22.00 until 05.00, is widely expected to be reduced or scrapped in the coming weeks.

Di Maio said the move is required to make Italy "truly attractive to foreign tourists and allow restaurateurs and traders to work at their best, to exploit the potential of summer and restart the country's economy."

For official information relating to the covid-19 situation in Italy - in English - see the health ministry website.

Photo credit: Sara Sette / Shutterstock.com.