Prayer #362: For Italy's Third Lockdown Due to Rising COVID-19
The prime minister of Italy, Mario Draghi, has announced a new lockdown for half of its 20 districts, due to a renewed rise in COVID-19, that country's third lockdown since the onset of the pandemic a year ago. Cities in the regions that are now under this lockdown include Rome, Milan, and Venice. The lockdown began on March 15 and will continue until right after Easter, ending on April 6. In the regions marked as "red zones," people are unable to leave their houses except for work or health reasons, and all non-essential businesses are closed. In "orange zones," people cannot leave their town, again excepting work or health reasons. Additionally, over the Easter weekend, April 3 through 5, the entire country will be considered a red zone, the highest lockdown category. Also, any region in Italy where weekly COVID cases rise to more than 250 per 100,000 people will then automatically go into lockdown, which means that additional places that are not currently locked down could end up being so. Italy's health ministry stated that the primary goal of the lockdown is to get the "R rate," the number of people that one infected person passes the virus onto, down to less than one. Currently, the R rate in Italy is estimated to be 1.6. The rise in COVID-19 in Italy, and in other places in Europe, is believed to be due to the emergence of the more contagious COVID-19 variants, some of which are now the dominant form of the virus there. Thus far, only about 3% of the population of Italy has been vaccinated.
Pray for the people of Italy during this spring lockdown. Pray for vaccinations to increase there to counteract the rise of COVID-19.
Ps. 104:4: "Seek the LORD and His strength, seek His presence continually."