The Spanish Health Ministry registered a further 9,663 coronavirus infections in its daily report on the pandemic yesterday, with the 14-day cumulative number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants more or less holding steady. The latter data point came in at 201 on Wednesday, and in Thursday’s report only rose to 202. The increasing pace of Spain’s vaccination program is seeing this fourth wave of the epidemic in the country go slower than the previous ones. The secretary of state for health, Silvia Calzón, insisted on Thursday that the growth in transmission of the virus was “slow but constant,” and called for the public to be “particularly cautious” in order to slow the rise further.
The incidence is very different according to region, with Navarre (436), Madrid (348) and the Basque Country (358) in the worst situation, and with worsening data, while the Canary Islands (131), Castilla-La Mancha (168), Murcia (63) and La Rioja (207) are improving. Valencia (35) and Cantabria (170), meanwhile, held steady in yesterday’s report.
The Health Ministry is launching a campaign to raise awareness among the population of the importance of getting vaccinated
For the third day running, the number of coronavirus patients in Spain’s hospitals has fallen: there are 9,724 compared to 9,795 the day before, while the pressure on the country’s intensive care units (ICUs) is also going down. Thursday’s report states that there are 2,143 Covid-19 patients in Spain’s ICUs, 10 fewer than the day before. That said, the percentage of ICU beds occupied by Covid-19 patients is still above 20%.
The official data from the Health Ministry show that the total number of confirmed coronavirus infections in Spain now stands at 3,396,685. The report also added 126 deaths after a positive coronavirus test, bringing the official death toll to 76,882.
As for the vaccination campaign, a total of 449,012 people were given their inoculations on Wednesday, close to the record so far of 453,000 shots in a single day that was registered the previous week. According to ministry data, the number of people who have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine now stands at 8,631,548, which is 18.2% of the total population of Spain.
Calzón on Thursday pointed to the effort being made by the country’s regions – who are in charge of their healthcare systems, the vaccination drive and the measures to control the pandemic. The regional systems have already administered more than 11 million vaccine doses, 1.1 million of which were injected in just three days. The secretary of state pointed to the fact that 97% of the over-80s have now had at least one dose of the two-dose vaccines being used in Spain (Oxford-AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna), and more than 56% have had both. What’s more, 31.8% of people aged 70 to 79 have had at least one dose, a percentage that is similar for 60- to 69-year-olds.
The Health Ministry is launching a campaign titled “Yo me vacuno” (I’m getting vaccinated) in a bid to raise awareness among the population of the importance of getting vaccinated and to remind people that the vaccines available are, according to Calzón, “safe, efficient and bring the hope of a return to economic and social normality onto the horizon, as well as for all aspects of life.”
English version by Simon Hunter.