A woman and volunteers wearing protective face masks and gloves attend to food distribution organised by the Sant'Egidio Community at the San Gaudenzio parish during the Covid-19 lockdown in Rome, Italy, March 23, 2020.
Lombardy has been the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy, which reported a spike in the nationwide death toll by 743 on Tuesday, with 3,612 new Covid-19 cases registered across the country.
He said 8,326 people have recovered from the coronavirus in Italy, 894 more than yesterday.
"A ratio of one certified case out of every 10 is credible", Angelo Borrelli told La Repubblica newspaper, indicating he believed some 700,000 people could have been infected.
Reports also emerged that some hospitals in Italy are prioritizing the young and those without other underlying health problems for ventilator support.
Nearby France and Spain have also implemented strict lockdowns as CCP virus cases in the two respective countries continue to rise.
"Of the 50,418 people who are positive, some 26,522 are now under home isolation - being asymptomatic or with light symptoms - another 3,204 are in intensive care, and all the other hospitalized in ordinary wards", he specified.
The lockdown will stay in place till April 3.
The decree sets 31 July as the end of the state of emergency but Conte was quick to assure Italians that they would not be locked up in their houses until that date.
The government has said a number of industrial sectors, including medical suppliers, must keep operating during the crisis, but there is growing unhappiness amongst some unions who think the prescribed list of strategic concerns is too wide.
However, there has been pushback as workers in the metal, chemical, textile, rubber-plastic and paper industries plan to go on strike on Wednesday.