Italian health officials are cheering after the number of people currently being treated for COVID-19 rose by only a few hundred for the first time since the outbreak began.
Figures from the civil protection service show the number of those receiving hospital care or recovering at home under medical supervision rising by 355 to 106,962 today.
But the figure outside the outbreak’s Italian epicenter in Milan’s northern region of Lombardy went up by just 11 cases.
It went up by 344 in Lombardy itself.
The number had been rising by at least 1,000 a day nationally for over a month.
“In absolute terms, we have had the highest number of recoveries since the start of the crisis,” civil protection service chief Angelo Berrelli tells reporters.
Italy’s official death toll still rose by another 575 fatalities Friday to 22,745 — second-most after the United States.
The number of people currently suffering from COVID-19 is counted separately from the number of new officially registered infections.
That number rose by 3,493 today — about the same as it has been all week.
The generally improving picture prompted the civil protection service to announce that it was suspending daily briefings and moving to a twice-a-week format.
New tolls will still be issued daily.