The number of Coronavirus cases recorded in Spain has tripled in a little over two weeks according to figures published on Monday by the Spanish Ministry of Health.
With over 200 fresh outbreaks across the country, the number of infections has increased to 27.39 cases per 100,000 inhabitants up from 8.76 cases per 100,000 inhabitants on July 3.
It means that the number of cases in the country has more than tripled since the end of the 'State of Alarm' lockdown measures which were introduced to contain the spread.
The cumulative incidence of COVID is similar to early May when Spain entered the de-escalation phase of the lockdown which began in March.
At the end of June, the number of incidents had reached 7.74 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. However, since then the numbers have continued to rise with a large spike registered last week.
According to data from the World Health Organization (WHO), Spain is the only EU country (other than Luxembourg) where the number of Coronavirus cases is on the rise, with numbers up 103 per cent over a 14-day period.
In the Catalan cities of Lleida, l’Hospitalet and Barcelona the high rate of incidence is of particular concern. In total 803 infections were confirmed by PCR test between July 9th to 15th, pushing the incidence rate up to 49 per 100,000 inhabitants in the Catalan capital.
As a result, citizens of the region were urged to stay at home as clubs, cinemas, theatres and other venues were ordered to close to prevent further contagion.
However, citizens elected instead to head to the beaches of the Costa Brava to enjoy their summer holidays, with many now fearing a mandatory lockdown in the city.
A spokesperson for the Spanish Epidemiology Association, Fernando Rodríguez Artalejo said the outbreaks in the Spanish regions of Aragón, Catalonia and Basque Country are of most concern.
“The situation in these regions is very worrying.
“If they are not controlled immediately and thoroughly, we will have a very complicated situation.”
It comes as the Spanish health officials have recorded a total of 4,581 new cases over the weekend across the country with 201 active outbreaks.
At a press conference, Health Minister Salvador Illa (pictured) said, “We’re worried about the outbreaks in Aragón and Cataluña.
“Where measures have been relaxed is where these clusters appear,” he added.
“We’re talking about large family gatherings and spaces associated with nightlife.”
A number of regions including the Balearic Islands have placed restrictions on nightclubs and bars as a result of the spike with some establishments having their capacities reduced and others being closed completely.
With the addition of the most recent cases, it now means that the total number of infections in the country since the pandemic started stands at over 266,194 with 28,424 recorded deaths.
Source: El Pais
Image Credit: La Moncloa