Over 900 people have died from the coronavirus in the past 24 hours in Italy, the biggest daily leap since the coronavirus pandemic began late December in China.
The total death toll in Italy stood at 9,154 after 969 deaths were reported on Friday, CNN reports. This is the darkest day yet in a country that has been in a complete lockdown for almost two weeks.
The disturbing death toll came after coronavirus cases worldwide surpassed the threshold of half a million, data from worldometers.info showed.
The global death toll has also climbed past 25,000 after Spain, the 4th worst-hit nation recorded almost 800 deaths in the past 24 hours.
Experts believe the death toll might even be twice the current figure as many people die without being tested.
Countries have continued to report inadequate testing kits for potential patients of Covid-19, a strain of coronavirus which has continued to defy science.
With nearly a 100,000 infections, the U.S which has become the country mostly ravaged by the disease, surpassing China were the virus is believed to have emanated from. This has marked a new milestone in the fight against the global pandemic
Italy also became the second country to overtake China in the number of infections, reaching 86,498 cases.
Why so grim in Italy?
The rapid spread of the deadly disease in Italy is largely blamed on its large population of elderly people, who are particularly susceptible to serious complications from the virus. Italy has the world’s second-oldest population, and the vast majority of its dead — 87 per cent — were over 70.
Health authorities also cited other reasons such as the country’s overwhelmed health care systems and the delayed imposition of complete lockdown measures.
Italian authorities have imposed tighter restrictions on people and businesses with countries such as China and Cuba sending personnel and equipment to help stem the tide of the deadly virus in the European country.