Covid-19 in Spain: The fifth wave of the coronavirus sees the pressure on hospitals increase, with 370 new patients per day | Society
Spain’s health ministry reported 61,628 new cases of coronavirus on Monday and added 23 victims of Covid-19 to the total death toll. Data shows that this fifth wave of the pandemic continues to strengthen in Spain. The number of patients with Covid-19 now stands at 6,482, an increase of 1,426 since Friday. Of them, 1,039 are in intensive care units (ICUs), a figure that has increased by 167 since Friday. In each of the past seven days, the number of Covid-19 patients has increased by an average of 370 and intensive care patients by 46.
The 14-day cumulative number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants now stands at 600, up 63 points from Friday. Catalonia is the Spanish region that tops the table for this data point, with 1,234. In addition, Navarre and Castile and León also exceed 800 cases, while Aragon exceeds 700.
Data shows that the rate of new cases has slowed slightly, rising to 63% last week from 80% the week before. Despite this slight improvement, the deputy director of the Center for the Coordination of Health Alerts (CCAES) of the Ministry of Health, María José Sierra, insisted on Monday that “the cases continue to increase” and that if three in four people diagnosed with the coronavirus are under the age of 40, the incidence is increasing “in all age groups”.
Hospitalizations and intensive care admissions, which typically take a few weeks to increase after an increase in incidence, continue to accelerate according to Monday’s report. In recent days, the number of hospitalizations in Spain has increased by 67% compared to the increase of 43% the previous week. Yesterday’s report showed 45% occupancy of hospital beds by Covid-19 patients and 17% in intensive care units. Sierra called the numbers “worrying.”
“We are still in a very delicate moment and we should all be very worried,” she said on Monday. “The virus is still circulating widely. Once again, Catalonia is under the greatest pressure on its healthcare system, with a third of its beds occupied by coronavirus patients.
The number of deaths from Covid-19 has also increased slightly, with 99 victims added to the statistics in the last seven days, an increase of 13 from the previous week.
The fact that this fifth wave is expected to last a few more weeks is also reflected in other statistics, such as positivity (that is, the percentage of diagnostic tests that come back positive). The average in Spain is 15.1%, although in Catalonia the figure exceeds 20% and in Navarre, Aragon and Castilla y León it is approaching these levels.
In terms of age groups, the 20-29 year olds have a higher incidence, with 1,794 cases. But in Catalonia, Navarre, Castile and León and Asturias, the figure exceeds 3,000. This means that nearly one in 30 people aged 20 to 29 has tested positive for the virus in the past. Last 14 days. The second group with the highest infection rate are adolescents aged 12 to 19 (1,488).
Despite the vast majority of cases in these groups showing either mild symptoms or being asymptomatic, the volume of infections is so high that intensive care admissions are starting to be more frequent and there have even been deaths. In Catalonia, for example, on Sunday there were 14 patients in their 20s and two teenagers in intensive care, while a 29-year-old Covid-19 patient died.
Health chiefs are particularly concerned about an increase in incidence among older groups, particularly the nearly one million people in Spain aged 60 to 69 who are waiting to receive their second injection of the Oxford vaccine. AstraZeneca. A similar number of citizens aged 50 to 59 are also waiting for this injection. Studies published so far have shown that vaccines administered in Spain and across the European Union are also effective against the virus, even the more contagious delta variant, which is now dominant in most of the world. Spain. But this research has also shown that the risk of hospitalization also increases when a person has only received the first dose of one of these two-dose vaccines.
In the past seven days, the incidence of the virus in the 60-69 age group has fallen from 112 cases to 232 per 100,000 population, and from 125 to 237 cases in those aged 50-59.
english version by Simon Hunter.