Italy official data hides real scope of Covid-19 infection, cases could be 10 times more than reported

According to an Italian official, some 700,000 Italians might be infected with coronavirus, as against the official number of 69,176 cases

On Tuesday (March 24), Italy reported a staggering number of 743 fatalities, after a two-day decline in the number of deaths. It reported 5,249 new coronavirus cases, thus registering a dip in the number of cases. Although the Mediterranean nation has reported a total of 69,176 cases, according the head of the Civil Protection Agency, the actual number of those infected could be 10 times more than reported. The government agency is responsible for prediction, prevention and management of emergency events.

What did the Italian expert say?


Angelo Borrelli, head of the Civil Protection Agency, told La Repubblica newspaper that the country was testing for Covid-19 only those who had severe symptoms. "A ratio of one certified case out of every 10 is credible", he said, Reuters reported.

This indicates that about 700,000 Italians might be infected with novel coronavirus. This is more than the total number of cases reported from around the world, which on Wednesday, stands at 422,829.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte hiked fines for those found roaming around with no legitimate reasons, from $220 to $430-$3,225, AFP reported.

COVID-19: Updates

On Tuesday, US reported 11,089 new cases and 225 fatalities, its highest, since the first fatality in the country was reported on March 13. With 54,823 cases, the US has the third-highest number of infection cases, after China and Italy. Death toll currently stands at 778.

The US could become the next epicenter of coronavirus, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned. "We are now seeing a very large acceleration in cases in the US. So it does have that potential [to become the centre of the pandemic]", Margaret Harris, a WHO spokeswoman said, Guardian reported.

Spain continues to be second worst-hit, in terms of fatalities. It reported 680 new deaths on Tuesday. Its death toll now stands at 2,991, only after Italy and China. As many as 6,922 new cases were reported on Tuesday, taking its total tally to 42,058.

The death toll in France surpassed 1,000 to reach 1,100, after 240 new fatalities were reported on Tuesday. As many as 2,448 new cases were reported, bringing its total tally to 22,304.

Meanwhile, India, a country of 1.3 billion, has been put under complete lock-down for 21 days, starting on Wednesday. The South Asian nation has reported 536 cases and 10 fatalities as on Wednesday.

Related topics : Coronavirus