Pedestrians wearing face masks are seen on the street in Milan, Italy, March 2, 2020. (Photo: Xinhua)
ROME, April 23 (Xinhua) -- The daily number of patients who recovered from COVID-19 on Thursday surpassed new infections for the first time in Italy since the pandemic began in the country's northern region late February, according to the latest numbers released by the country's Civil Protection Department.
The death toll on Thursday was 464, bringing the nationwide fatalities to 25,549 since the pandemic first broke out in the northern Lombardy region on Feb. 21.
There were 2,646 new coronavirus infections and 3,033 additional recoveries compared to Wednesday, bringing the nationwide totals to 106,848 and 57,576, respectively.
"For the first time, the number of recoveries has outstripped the number of new infections in our country," Civil Protection Department Chief Angelo Borrelli told a televised press conference.
Of those infected, 2,267 are in intensive care -- down by 117 compared to Wednesday, and 22,871 are hospitalized -- down by 934. The rest, or 76 percent of those who tested positive, are in isolation at home.
The total number of active infections, fatalities and recoveries since late February rose to 189,973 cases as of Thursday.
Italy entered into a national lockdown on March 10 to contain the pandemic. The lockdown, which is expected to last until May 3, will be followed by a so-called "Phase Two," involving "the gradual resumption of social, economic and productive activities," the Italian government has explained.