Incidence rates across Spain continue to fall but the effects of the fifth wave are still being felt
The latest coronavirus update published by the Ministry of Health on Tuesday evening reports a further 10,072 confirmed cases in the previous 24 hours, but while case numbers continue to decline the bulletin also confirms a further 190 Covid-related deaths, the highest figure in any single day since May of this year.
There have now been a total of 83,527 deaths related to coronavirus since the pandemic first reached Spain early in 2020, and at the same time there are also 1,769 Covid patients in intensive care units across the country, accounting for 19.3 per cent of all available beds. In terms of hospital admissions the total has dropped slightly to 7,959 (down to 6.8 per cent of occupied beds), but the figures remain alarmingly high in both Catalunya and Madrid.
The overall 14-day cumulative incidence rate in Spain as a whole dropped slightly to 306 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, representing a decrease of around 56 per cent since the height of the fifth wave, although it also worth remembering that on the same date last year the figure was far lower at 173. By late August 2020 the figures were beginning to rise again as the summer drew to a close, and despite the progress of the vaccination campaign there remain worries that the same could happen in 2021.
For the moment, the 7-day rate remains under half the 14-day figure at 130 and there will most likely be further decreases over the next few days, but this rate was unchanged from the previous day and it may be that infection rates are beginning to stabilize.
Despite the improvement in the overall situation, only Asturias, the Canaries and the Comunidad Valenciana among Spain’s 17 regions present rates below the “extreme risk” threshold of 250, recording figures of 140, 210 and 245 respectively. The next lowest figure is in Aragón (299), while at the other end of the scale are Extremadura (490), La Rioja (402) and the Basque Country (391).
In terms of age groups, all sectors above the age of 40 are below the 250 threshold, while the highest rates are still reported in teenagers (640) and those aged between 20 and 29 (516).
Following the administration of 347,000 doses on Monday, the number of people fully vaccinated against Covid-19 in Spain has reached 31,653,643, equivalent to 66.7 per cent of the population.
35,831,729 people have received at least one vaccine dose, representing 75.5 per cent of the total population.
The last group to be included in the immunization consists of teenagers, and the proportion in this age group to have received their first vaccine dose has now reached 61.7 per cent. However, so soon after the invitation to vaccinate was extended to teenagers relatively few of them (just 16.4 per cent) have received their second doses.
In the 20-29 age group the equivalent proportions are 70.5 per cent with at least one dose and 46.8 per cent fully vaccinated.
A decision is expected from the Ministry of Health during this week regarding the administration of “top-up” or “booster” jabs for those who received their first two vaccine doses earlier in the year, and on Wednesday at least four regions are set to demand permission to go ahead with this stage at the weekly meeting of the inter-territorial health committee.
Image: regional government of Asturias
Source: Murcia Today