The number of Coronavirus cases in Spain has increased eightfold since the end of the State of Alarm.
From June 20 to July 30, the number of new infections jumped from 334 to 2,789.
The news comes despite a number of Spanish regions reintroducing local lockdown measures to curb the virus placing restrictions on movement along with the closure of some night-time venues.
According to Health Minister Salvador Illa, the majority of infections are happening in family gatherings or in night-time venues such as bars and clubs.
On Saturday a court in the province of Valladolid authorised the order from the Castilla y León regional government to lockdown over 10,000 citizens in the towns of Íscar and Pedrajas de San Esteban, for a period of 14 days after a spike in cases was recorded.
The Minister for Health, summed up the situation saying, “We are out of the storm, but we still haven’t arrived at a safe port.”
It is thought that during the peak of the pandemic between March and April, the government recorded more than 8,000 new COVID infections each day with half of the 200,000 cases diagnosed up until May being admitted into a hospital.
Today, the country is carrying out around 300,000 weekly tests, which is more than double the number taken three months ago.
Recently published data suggests that there were more than 14,000 infections detected in the last seven days alone with just 10% of patients being admitted into hospital.
Exact numbers are difficult to establish as it is believed that around 60% of all Coronavirus cases are now asymptomatic meaning that the patient does not display any of the most common symptoms.
Despite the big increase in new cases, fatalities still remain relatively low.
At the height of the pandemic, there were around 30,000 people hospitalised, with 3,000 patients requiring intensive care and over 950 deaths being registered each day.
This is in contrast to the 17 autonomous regions currently reporting fewer than 250 people in ICU and less than 10 deaths per day. The Spanish Ministry of Health has stated that the figures are closer to 10 registered deaths per week.
The recent spike in infections has led the British government to remove the country from their list of safe countries forcing those who wish to holiday in Spain to quarantine for two weeks on their return. The move has caused a lot of anger and confusion and will only inflict further pain on the Spanish tourism sector which has already been hit hard by the pandemic with tourism expenditure down a whopping 98.6% in June compared to the same period in 2019.
Despite recent outbreaks in the three regions of Catalonia, Aragón and Navarre, Health Minister Illa asserts that “there is no area with uncontrolled transmission.”
“The most worrying outbreaks in Zaragoza and Barcelona are in the control phase,” he told Spain’s Congress of Deputies on Thursday.
On Friday, the region of Aragón reported nearly 380 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the last 14 days, nearly double the incidence rate it recorded during the worst days of the pandemic.
Catalonia’s incidence rate is also a concern with 145 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, however, this is lower than the 245 cases that were recorded at the beginning of April.
Navarre has seen its cumulative incidence rate increase tenfold in one month, rising to 144 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. However, this is once again well below the 336 cases that were recorded at its peak.
Spain’s fatality rate is one of the highest in Europe and currently stands at 10% with 28,455 deaths from a total of 288,522 diagnosed cases.
However, it is thought that the true fatality rate is a lot lower due to a lack of testing.
Epidemiologist García-Basteiro said, “We know that the fatality rate, if we are able to diagnose absolutely all cases, is relatively low. If we apply the case fatality rate only to serious cases, those which arrived in hospital during March and April, and those which were diagnosed, the rate will be higher”.
Source: El Pais
November 26, 2020
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