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Coronavirus cases soar in Italy as authorities scramble to find patient zero

Over the weekend, Italy became victim to Europe’s biggest outbreak of the novel coronavirus as cases rose from three on Friday morning to more than 130 by Sunday. The majority of the coronavirus infections remain in mainland China, surpassing 78,000 confirmed infections as of last week, followed by Japan with 738 cases, and South Korea with 602. Italy’s spike represents the biggest outbreak outside of Asia. Angelo Borelli, head of Italy’s Civil Protection agency spoke Sunday at a news conference, stating that three people have died as a result of the disease.

Borelli also stated that there majority of the cases, 110, are in the northern region of Lombardy. However, Italy finds itself in a tough situation in terms of combatting the further spread of the disease, as they are yet to identify patient zero. Therefore, it is much more difficult to forecast possible new cases. Over the weekend, a ban on public events was enacted in 10 municipalities and public buildings were closed along with limited transport and the surveillance and quarantine of individuals who may have been exposed.

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