Covid-19: the Omicron variant spreads “rapidly” in Italy – News
Italy was the first western country to be affected by the pandemic early last year
The highly contagious variant of the Omicron coronavirus is spreading rapidly in Italy, with new cases identified in the north and south of the country, the National Institute of Health (ISS) announced on Saturday.
The ISS said its network of regional laboratories had so far identified 84 Omicron cases, “a sharp acceleration” from 55 on Friday morning.
Thirty-three of the cases were found in the northern Lombardy region, around Milan, and another 20 in the southern Campania region, centered on Naples.
ISS President Silvio Brusaferro said the spread of Omicron was “widely expected, consistent with what we have seen in other countries, and we will likely see an increase in cases in the coming days.”
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Italy, the first western country to be affected by the Covid-19 pandemic early last year, has seen new infections and deaths increase in recent weeks, but the number of daily cases remains well below some others European countries like Great Britain and Germany.
Italy reported 120 coronavirus-related deaths on Friday compared to 123 the day before, while the daily tally of new infections fell from 26,109 to 28,632.