VENICE, ITALY (WITN) - The death toll is on the rise in Italy.
More than 700 people died in a single day from the virus this week. As of Wednesday night, Italy has the most deaths related to the virus.
To slow the spread of the virus, people who live there have been on lockdown for two weeks.
Venice native Andrea Casetta told WITN that he is only able to leave his house to get food and other essential items, but he must have a letter granting him permission. He says that letter details where he is going and why.
Casetta also says hospitals have begun to overcrowd, simply because too many people are being diagnosed at once.
Some experts say Italy is about 10 days ahead of the United States in terms of the progression of the virus. With that in mind, Casetta has a warning to Americans.
"You must be careful. Even here at the beginning, people said it's the normal flu. Everyday, there are more than 500 people dying. Yesterday, almost 700. So, it's not the normal flu," said Casetta.
COVID-19 is a new virus and doctors and scientists are still learning about it. There is no approved vaccine to combat it, but trials are underway.
A national lockdown has not been declared in the United States, although some states have declared this individually.