The death toll from coronavirus in Italy has climbed by 760 to 13,915, the Civil Protection Agency has said, slightly higher than the daily rise of 727 registered a day earlier.

The number of new cases was steady, growing by 4,668 from a previous 4,782, bringing total infections since the outbreak came to light on 21 February to 115,242.

It was the fourth consecutive day in which the number of new cases remained within a range of 4,050-4,782, seeming to confirm government hopes that the epidemic has hit a plateau, ahead of a hoped-for decline in the near future.

Italy hit a daily peak of 6,557 new cases on 21 March.

Of those originally infected nationwide, some 18,278 have fully recovered, compared to 16,847 yesterday. There were 4,053 people in intensive care, up from a previous 4,035.

Italy has registered more deaths than anywhere else in the world and accounts for around 28% of all global fatalities from the virus.

In Lombardy, the epicentre of the outbreak, the daily tallies of deaths and cases were both down compared with those of the day before, coming in at 367 and 1,292 respectively.