A blood donor has her temperature checked inside a Red Cross mobile center, in Rome Tuesday, March 17, 2020. After the initial scare due to the coronavirus outbreak, many donors responded to the Red Cross appeal to continue giving their blood. (Cecilia Fabiano/LaPresse via AP)
UPDATED 7:28 AM PT — Tuesday, March 17, 2020
Italy has recorded hundreds of new deaths due to the coronavirus. The country’s total has risen to more than 2,000 people. The number of positive diagnoses also rose to nearly 30,000 cases.
Italy’s Special Commissioner for the Coronavirus, Angelo Borrelli, said cases have slowed in the hardest hit regions as health officials work to get masks and other supplies.
“As I’ve already said recently, in many countries where our supplies come from, there have been blocks and interruptions of supplies due to government decisions to interrupt exports in order to guarantee the self-sufficiency of those countries,” explained the official.
Medical staff wearing protective suits carry the coffin containing the body of Assunta Pastore, 87, after she passed away in her room at the Garden hotel in Laigueglia, northwest Italy, Liguria region, Sunday March 1, 2020. The woman, part of a group of elderly tourist from the Lombardia region, tested positive of the COVID-19. (AP Photo)
Italy has remained the epicenter of the virus outbreak in Europe. Deaths have severely affected morgues in the country. Coffins are lining up because funerals are now considered illegal in an effort to stop big groups of people from gathering together.