Italy imposed ‘extraordinary measures’ to tackle virus outbreak

Italy imposed 'extraordinary measures' to tackle virus outbreak
The coronavirus cases in Italy rose to 79. Source: EPA
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Daily US Times, Rome: Italy has imposed “extraordinary measures” to tackle the coronavirus outbreak. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced the emergency plan late on Saturday as the number of cases rose to 79.

The measures were imposed after tow Italian citizens died from the virus. Under the plan, a dozen towns in the northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto have been effectively quarantined. All sports and schools in those areas have been suspended including several Serie A football matches. Around 50,000 people from towns in two northern regions have been asked to stay at home.

The Prime minister said it would now be forbidden to enter or leave the outbreak areas unless special permission was granted.

Police will have the authority to ensure the regulations are enforced. If needed, the armed forces will have the authority too.

Lombardy’s health chief Giulio Gallera said the contagiousness of this virus is very strong and pretty virulent.

Authorities hope the ‘extraordinary measures’ will help to curb the outbreak.

Italian authorities fear that the virus spread beyond the isolated clusters of cases in Lombardy and Veneto, making it difficult to contain.

The coronavirus was originated in China last year and since it has spread 26 countries. South Korea is facing the most serious situation with more than 500 confirmed cases and two deaths. There have been 11 deaths reported outside of China so far.

At least 229 new cases had been confirmed since Friday, making the total number to 433.

The country’s Vice Health Minister Kim Gang-lip said the outbreak had entered “a serious new phase”.

Like the previous two days, many of the new cases are linked to a hospital and to a religious group near the south-eastern city of Daegu, authorities have said.

So far, two patients have died and there are fears the number will rise.

Concerns and fear rise across the world as the virus is spreading fast.

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the World Health Organization said the greatest concern now was countries with weaker health systems, particularly in Africa.