Italy's covid-19 contagion rate continues to fall

All of Italy to be 'yellow zone' next week says health minister.

Italy's national health institute (ISS) announced on Friday that the national 'R' reproduction number has fallen to 0.78 from 0.86 last week, according to the latest covid-19 data.

The report found that all of Italy's regions and autonomous provinces can now be considered low risk, with an R-rate below 1. (An 'R' value higher than 1 indicates that the epidemic is growing.)

The incidence rate has dropped to 66 coronavirus cases for every 100,000 inhabitants, compared to 96 last week - reports news agency ANSA - with the number of intensive care patients falling from 2,056 on 11 May to 1,689 on 19 May.

The downward trend has been welcomed by Italian health minister Roberto Speranza who said the positive data is the "result of the measures adopted so far, the correct behaviour of the vast majority of people and the vaccination campaign."

For official information relating to the covid-19 situation in Italy - in English - see the health ministry website. Photo: Caffè Greco in Rome, credit: REPORT / Shutterstock.