The coronavirus pandemic has claimed 26,644 lives in locked-down Italy, bringing the total number of infections, fatalities and recoveries to 197,675 as of Sunday, according to latest data released by the country's Civil Protection Department.
A total of 260 people died from the disease caused by the novel coronavirus in the last 24 hours, the lowest single-day death toll since March 15.
The number of new cases also fell, with 2,324 new cases reported over the last 24 hours, 33 fewer than on Saturday, and the lowest in six days.
The number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care units (ICUs) continued to decline, a trend that started three weeks ago. On Sunday, 2,009 patients are in ICUs, down from 2,102 a day earlier.
The number of patients recovering at home -- the mildest of three categories of infected individuals -- was 82,722 while those recovering in the hospital with symptoms totaled 21,372. On Saturday, the numbers were respectively 82,212 and 21,533.
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," which involves "the gradual resumption of social, economic and productive activities," the Italian government has explained.