Vatican reports first case of coronavirus
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The Vatican confirmed Friday that a patient in its health services has tested positive for coronavirus. 

Vatican spokesperson Matteo Bruni said the case was diagnosed Thursday, Reuters reported. Services in Vatican clinics have currently been suspended in order to sanitize the facility.

Bruni did not confirm whether the infected person was an employee or one of the few clergy or guards who live inside the walls of the Vatican.


Italy, which surrounds the Vatican, is the worst-hit European country by coronavirus, with 148 fatalities from the virus and 3,858 infections. The walled city-state is surrounded by Rome, where most Vatican employees live.

As of Thursday, 42 people had tested positive for coronavirus in Rome province, Reuters reported.

Last week, Pope FrancisPope FrancisThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Facebook - Trump, Biden search for undecided voters in final stretch Pope Francis names first Black US cardinal, Wilton Gregory The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by Goldman Sachs - Iran, Russia election bombshell; final Prez debate tonight MORE canceled a Lent retreat for the first time in his papacy, but the Vatican confirmed that he tested negative for coronavirus earlier this week. 

The Vatican has said that it is considering ways to modify the pope’s appearances and activities to limit the potential spread of coronavirus, according to Reuters. Tens of thousands of people gather in St. Peter’s Square on Sundays to listen to the pope give a weekly blessing and message. Thousands also gather in his weekly audience, which is held either outside or in a hall inside the Vatican. 

There are at least 100,329 confirmed cases of coronavirus around the world, and there have been 3,406 documented deaths.