The weekly incidence at a national level has showed a further slight increase in coronavirus cases, according to the latest health data by Italy’s Higher Health Institute.
On a national level, the incidence rate – the weekly cases of infection per 100,000 inhabitants – remains above the low-risk threshold of 50.
18 regions have been classified as moderate risk, with Lazio and the autonomous provinces of Bolzano and Trento the only regions to be categorised as low risk.
Puglia, Sicily and Tuscany – while in the moderate ranking – have been identified as the regions with high probability of progressing to increased risk levels.
But this classification isn’t the full picture when it comes to deciding which regions move into the various tiers of restrictions – a moderate epidemiological risk classification alone doesn’t mean a region would lose its ‘white zone’ status.
Sardinia and Sicily are two regions that could move into a low-moderate risk ‘yellow zone’ in the coming weeks: they have both recorded rates of infections and hospitalisations which approach the threshold for new anti-Covid measures to be imposed.
They almost meet the parameters set when a region will move from ‘white’ to a ‘yellow’ zone:
- The incidence of weekly cases of infection per 100,000 inhabitants is between 50 and 150;
- The occupancy rate of intensive care units exceeds 10 percent and;
- Occupancy reaches 15 percent in the case of general hospital wards.
All three have to be met at the same time for a region’s risk status to be upgraded.
Meanwhile, the first localised ‘red zones’ for months were declared in two municipalities in the southern region of Calabria.
On a national level, the incidence rate is increasing with 73 cases per 100,000 inhabitants compared to 68 last week. The lowest weekly cases are in Molise with 20.9.
The report found that the current impact of Covid-19 on hospitals is “limited”, but occupancy rates and the number of people admitted to both general wards intensive care are increasing.
No region or province exceeds the critical threshold of occupancy of beds in general wards and intensive care – although the ICU occupancy rate is slightly increasing, now at 4 percent.
The report also pointed to the effectiveness of vaccinations, with 96.8 percent coverage against Covid-related deaths among those vaccinated versus unvaccinated.
#COVID19, 🦠 per i vaccinati 💉con ciclo completo
– efficacia del 96,8% contro i decessi (vs non vaccinati)
– efficacia del 97,2% contro i ricoveri in terapia intensiva
– efficacia dell'82,3% contro l'infezione#vaccini #vaccineworks
Consulta le slide https://t.co/68cUOLzuJH pic.twitter.com/oRUpqaJFaw
— Istituto Superiore di Sanità (@istsupsan) August 13, 2021
“Higher vaccination coverage and the completion of vaccination cycles are the main tools to prevent further recurrences [of cases]”, stated the ISS.
“Extensive case tracking and containment should be carried out, attention should be kept high and measures and behaviour should be implemented and enforced to limit further increases in virus circulation,” it added.
Deputy heath secretary Andrea Costa told news channel La7, “It is not a coincidence that in regions with lower numbers of vaccinated there is a risk of yellow zone – there is a direct link,” reported news agency Ansa.
The data shows “that the islands where there is a delay in the vaccination cycle, should make us think about how important it is to vaccinate,” he added.
On Friday, Italy recorded 7,409 new cases and 45 new deaths – an increase from yesterday’s 7,270 cases and 30 deaths. The positivity rate has slightly increased to 3.28 percent
Italy has confirmed 127,476 coronavirus-related deaths in total.