March 25, 2023

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Coronavirus: Spain death toll rises by 832 overnight in latest surge

in fatalities.

The total number of positive coronavirus cases rose to 72,248 from 64,059 on Friday.

Figures from the Spanish ministry of health show more than 40,000 people have been hospitalised and 4,575 people have been admitted to intensive care. A further 12,285 people have reportedly recovered.

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Spain is the country with the fourth highest number of Covid-19 cases in the world, following the US, Italy and China.

But only Italy’s death tally within 24 hours is higher than Spain’s, with 969 deaths between Thursday and Friday.

A second makeshift morgue set up in an ice rink in a Madrid retail centre will begin functioning on Monday to help the country cope with the high death toll. Real Madrid said their Santiago Bernabeu stadium will be used to store medical supplies.

Spain’s coronavirus lockdown was extended on Thursday for an additional two weeks, until 11 April, and people are banned from leaving their homes except to buy essential supplies or go to work.

The medical system is being pushed to the limits in the worst-hit areas in Madrid and northeast Catalonia, with doctors, nurses and ambulance drivers falling ill at an alarming rate and working non-stop.

Pablo Rojo, an ambulance medic at Barcelona’s Dos de Maig hospital, says the average age of infections is decreasing. He says: “They’re not 80 years old anymore, they are now 30 and 40 years old.”

Concerns about the increasing number of medical workers being infected in Spain are mounting. A medical director in Madrid, Professor Julio Mayol, told Sky News there could be as much as 25 per cent of medical professionals falling ill in the coming days “if we don’t do something”.

Professor Mayol said: “It is a bad situation, it is really bad and it is getting worse day by day, because the number of positive Covid-19 patients is increasing.”

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He also said the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) has made it “very difficult” to send medical workers to the front lines of the outbreak without adequate equipment.

“Many of our doctors have been admitted, even those fighting the virus. Nurses are also a major problem for us, especially those in the intensive care units,” he said.

“If we don’t get the right personnel to handle these ICU patients, it’s going to be almost impossible to increase the number of ICU beds, because we won’t have trained personnel to take care of our patients.”

Additional reporting by Associated Press

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