BUCHAREST, Dec. 4 (Xinhua) -- Romania recorded another 8,062 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing its total number of infections to 500,273, official statistics showed on Friday.
A total of 176 patients died from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, taking the country's total number of fatalities to 12,052, said the Strategic Communication Group, the official novel coronavirus communication task force.
It is worth noting that there are 1,275 severe cases among the 12,940 hospitalized patients, the highest level since the pandemic began in late February in the 19-million-population country.
Currently, there are 98,009 active cases in the country and the total number of patients cured and discharged reached 390,212.
Official statistics showed the epidemic situation in the country has worsened in the past month, with a daily average of 7,800.76 new cases and 145.43 deaths, more than doubling the number in October.
Alexandru Rafila, a well-known microbiology expert in Romania, told local media Thursday that the intensive care units of many hospitals across the country are now overcrowded, and the number of deaths is increasing.
Some experts predict the country's epidemic situation will worsen in mid-December due to mass gatherings over the just-past long weekend for National Day and the upcoming Parliamentary Elections on Sunday.
Other experts believe that the country can effectively control the epidemic only if it implements a nationwide lockdown again, just as it did in the spring.
The authorities reimposed a one-month curfew, from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m, throughout the country starting from Nov. 9. and successively issued two-week local lockdown orders for dozens of cities and towns with severe epidemics.
Meanwhile, the government has also expanded mandatory mask-wearing from indoor public spaces to all public places.
According to the World Health Organization, face masks should be used as a part of a comprehensive strategy of measures to suppress COVID-19 transmission and save lives.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreaks, wearing masks in public has been widely accepted in Asian countries like China, South Korea, Japan and Vietnam to limit the spread of COVID-19. Enditem