Italy set to lock down Milan region in a bid to contain coronavirus outbreak

Italy is set to lock down its wealthiest and most populous region, which includes the financial capital Milan, as part of tough new measures expected to be approved on Saturday to try to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

The new guidelines include telling people not to enter or leave Lombardy, which is home to nearly 10 million people, just as 11 provinces in four of Italy’s 19 other regions, as indicated by adraft decree seen by Reuters.

All museums, gyms, cultural centers, ski resorts and swimming pools will be closed in the target areas, according to the decree, which is due to come into force from Sunday.

The legislation is expected to be endorsed later on Saturday, the leader of the civil protection agency said earlier,after the number of coronavirus infections jumped by more than 1,200 in the past 24 hours.

Up until this point, just a few limited areas of northern Italy, known as “red zones,” have been quarantined.

Leave will be canceled for all healthcare workers,weddings, burial services and games suspended, and home working should be adopted as much as could reasonably be expected, the draft said.

The 11 provinces affected are those around Modena, Parma,Piacenza, Reggio Emilia and Rimini in the area of Emilia-Romagna – Venice, Padua and Treviso in the region of Veneto – Asti and Alessandria in Piedmont – and the province of Pesaro and Urbino in the central region of Marche.

All schools and colleges will be shut in Lombardy and the listed provinces until at least April 3. This week, the government declared schools all over the nation would be closed until March 15.

The epidemic is as of now weighing hard on Italy’s struggling economy and Rome has promised to spend 7.5 billion euros ($8.5billion) to tackle the outbreak and its outcomes.

The decree instruct citizens to “absolutely avoid” either entering or leaving the areas listed, and even to stay away from moving around other than for emergencies or “essential work reasons” within the designated areas.

Cafes and restaurants will be permitted to remain open as long as a distance of one meter between clients can be ensured.

The number of coronavirus cases in Italy, Europe’s most noticeably worst hitcountry, reached 5883 on Saturday, the Civil Protection Agency said, the biggest daily rise since the epidemic started just over two weeks ago.

Death due of the highly Infectious virus were up 36 to 233, the head of the agency, Angelo Borrelli, told a news conference.

The disease was first affirmed in Italy 15 days ago and remains mainly centered on northern regions, particularly Lombardy,but cases have now been affirmed in every one of the nation’s 20 regions, with deaths recorded in eight of them.

On Friday, the government endorsed a plan to employ up to 20,000 new doctors and nurses to respond to the emergency.

Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna and Veneto represent to 85% of national cases overall and 92% of recorded deaths.

“We will win this fight if our citizens adopt a responsible attitude and change their way of living,” Borrelli said

In the worst affected areas, Italy’s hospitals are undergrowing strain. The number of patients in intensive care rose to 567, up 23% from the day before.

Of those originally infected, 589 have completely recovered.

National Health Institute boss Silvio Brusaferro said the average age of patients who have died was over 81. They were prevalently male and over 80% had more than two underlying health conditions.

The outbreak has killed in excess of 3,400 people worldwide and spread across more than 90 countries outside China.