As the novel coronavirus claims many lives around the globe, a 102-year old woman in Italy recovered from the virus, CNN said in a report on Friday.
The elderly lady by the name Italica Grondona stayed in the San Martino hospital in Genoa for 20 days, doctors said. One of the doctors, Vera Sicbaldi, said that her case represents hope for all the elderly facing the virus.
"We nicknamed her 'Highlander' – the immortal," Sicbaldi added. Grondona was hospitalized at the start of the month with mild heart failure, showing only mild virus symptoms. After she tested positive, the doctors did very little, Sicbaldi said, adding that the elderly lady recovered on her own.
While inspiring hope, the doctors decided to study her case in-depth, due to her impressive recovery.
Her nephew Renato Villa Grondona said that he doesn’t know what her secret is, but “I know she is a free and independent woman.”
According to Italy’s National Health Institute, the average age of those who tested positive and subsequently died is 78.
Italy is the hardest-hit country by the COVID-19 outbreak in Europe with a death toll at 10,779 and the number of officially registered infections just under 100,000 as of Monday.
Italian officials brushed aside various data suggesting that both rates were slowing and that Italy might have already lived through the worst.
"We are in the midst of a pandemic," Health Minister Roberto Speranza told reporters.
Italy is currently in a state of medical emergency that will expire on July 31. But there is nothing preventing his government from declaring a new one should restrictions be needed into the second half of the year.
Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has indicated that he would like to see most measures lifted by June.