Across the European Union, COVID-19 cases have begun to rise steadily, from 200 per million in mid-February to 270 per million last weekend.
That level is still a long way off from the EU record of 490 per million in November, but a worrying trend nonetheless.
“We are weary of it all, but we’re determined, too,” a doctor at an Italian hospital told Al Jazeera, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Most regions in Italy, including Rome and Milan, are now classified as high-risk and there will be a three-day national lockdown over Easter.
“We were in a period of relative stability around December and January, but now the figures are worsening again very quickly,” said the doctor.
In her large hospital in central Italy, there are concerns about the average age and medical condition of recent COVID-19 patients – many have observed a shift. It is no longer mostly elderly people with underlying illnesses in the wards, but also previously fully healthy 50-year-olds.