Italy reports 343 coronavirus deaths on Tuesday, 17,083 new cases

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MILAN, March 2 (Reuters) - Italy reported 343 coronavirus-related deaths on Tuesday against 246 the day before, the health ministry said, while the daily tally of new infections rose to 17,083 from 13,114 the day before.

Some 335,983 tests for COVID-19 were carried out in the past day, compared with a previous 170,633, the health ministry said.

Italy has registered 98,288 deaths linked to COVID-19 since its outbreak emerged in February last year, the second-highest toll in Europe after Britain and the seventh-highest in the world. The country has reported 2.95 million cases to date.

Patients in hospital with COVID-19 - not including those in intensive care - stood at 19,570 on Tuesday, up from 19,112 a day earlier.

There were 222 new admissions to intensive care units, up from 171 on Monday. The total number of intensive care patients increased to 2,327 from a previous 2,289.

When Italy's second wave of the epidemic was accelerating quickly in the first half of November, hospital admissions were rising by about 1,000 per day, while intensive care occupancy was increasing by about 100 per day. (Reporting by Cristina Carlevaro, editing by Sabina Suzzi)