Italy expected to make mask-wearing compulsory OUTDOORS as Covid cases in the first European country hit by the virus continue to climb

  • Lazio and Campania have already made mask wearing mandatory outdoors
  •  Authorities are ‘working on a proposal’ to make it a compulsory rule nation-wide 
  • On Saturday, Italy saw 2,844 new cases, its highest daily count since April 

Italy is considering making the use of masks outdoors mandatory nationwide to fight the coronavirus.

Infections in Italy – the first European country to be hit by the virus – have risen steadily over the past two months.

The regions of Lazio, around Rome, and Campania, around Naples, have already made mask wearing mandatory outside.

And authorities are ‘working on a proposal’ to make it a compulsary rule nation-wide, Health Minister Roberto Speranza told the Chamber of Deputies on Tuesday. 

On Saturday, Italy saw 2,844 new cases, its highest daily count since April, but still far below the numbers being recorded in France, Spain and Britain

Italy has seen some 36,000 deaths since its outbreak came to light on February 21, the second highest official toll in Europe after Britain

Infections in Italy (Rome, pictured) – the first European country to be hit by the virus – have risen steadily over the past two months 

On Saturday, Italy saw 2,844 new cases, its highest daily count since April, but still far below the numbers being recorded in France, Spain and Britain.

The daily death toll is normally below 30, a far cry from the tallies of close to 1,000 it suffered at the peak of its epidemic in late March.

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said on Tuesday there was no room for complacency.

‘The battle is not won, and we will need to remain on maximum alert during the weeks and months to come,’ he said at a conference in Rome.

Italy has seen some 36,000 deaths since its outbreak came to light on February 21, the second highest official toll in Europe after Britain.

Conte said last week he would ask parliament to extend the country’s Covid-19 state of emergency to the end of January and the cabinet is due to meet late on Tuesday to formalise the decision.

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte (pictured last week) said on Tuesday there was no room for complacency

The regions of Lazio, around Rome (Saint Peter’s Square last week, pictured), and Campania, around Naples, have already made mask-wearing mandatory outside

On Saturday, Italy (Rome pictured) saw 2,844 new cases, its highest daily count since April, but still far below the numbers being recorded in France, Spain and Britain

The state of emergency, due to expire in mid-October, gives greater powers to central government, making it easier for officials to bypass the bureaucracy that smothers much decision-making in Italy.

It was yesterday reported that Italy – along with Greece and Sweden – could be added to the UK’s quarantine list this week amid the continued surge in coronavirus cases across Europe.

The countries would be added to the ‘red’ list of high-risk destinations, but it comes as the Government is considering slashing quarantine from 14 days to eight days.

A negative test on the eighth day after returning from a high-risk country would allow the period of self-isolation to end. 

But the shortened isolation will be of little solace to families looking to take half-term holidays as the number of ‘red’ countries grows. 

Italy’s (Rome pictured) daily death toll is normally below 30, a far cry from the tallies of close to 1,000 it suffered at the peak of its epidemic in late March

Italy’s cumulative number of cases over seven days – a key metric watched by Downing Street – hit 25.6 per 100,000 residents. In Greece, it is 22.3 and Sweden, which adopted fewer restrictive lockdown measures, is 31.7. The Government’s threshold is said to be 20. 

The Daily Mail’s Get Britain Flying Again campaign is calling for an air passenger testing regime to rescue the aviation sector and boost the virus-ravaged economy.

It is hoped the new eight-day quarantine could come into effect before Christmas, and the tests would be paid for by travellers, according to The Telegraph. 

The Government is said to be sceptical about testing on the fifth day, a model adopted by Germany and Iceland,  because 15 per cent of infections would be missed.

Testing on the eight day results in a 95 per cent accuracy, Ministers say. 

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