Tuesday, December 5

At least seven communities beat infection records on the last day of the year

The last day of the year ends with a record of infections for most of the autonomous communities that have reported their data at this time. Andalusia, Aragon, Catalonia, the Valencian Community, Galicia, Murcia or Navarra have registered unprecedented numbers of new infections in the last 24 hours.

As on November 24, this Friday the Ministry of Health does not publish its daily report with the evolution of the pandemic, but some regions have updated their balances, from which it can be deduced that the trend of infections at the national level follows the rise, more than a week after this wave reached the absolute record for the entire pandemic.

Since Tuesday of last week, Spain has marked daily peaks of new infections each day, up to more than 160,000 recorded yesterday.

This Friday, eleven communities have provided their data. Six of them mark increases with respect to the cases notified yesterday: Andalusia, Aragon, Catalonia, the Valencian Community, Galicia, Murcia and Navarra. On the other hand, La Rioja, Madrid, Cantabria, the Canary Islands and the Balearic Islands registered decreases this Friday.

Of the global, the regions that record the worst contagion data today are Catalonia, which again adds more than 25,000 new cases; the Community of Madrid, which totals 18,303, slightly below yesterday’s record; and Andalusia, which scores 15,471.

In all the autonomies that provide data, the incidence increases, a consistent trend in light of the general trend that has been triggered in recent days. The regions that until yesterday had the worst incidence rates at 14 days were Navarra, which is close to 4,000 cases per 100,000 inhabitants (3,810); La Rioja, with 2,861 cases; and Euskadi, with 2,731.

Spain thus closes the year with a sixth wave fired and with a peak that has not yet appeared. Yesterday, the communities registered 161,688 new cases; on Wednesday, 100,760, and on Tuesday, more than 99,000. These highs are very far from those registered in the third wave of the pandemic, which reached a maximum number of cases in January, specifically on January 21, with 44,357, almost four times below the current one. The figures are hardly comparable, yes, with the first outbreak of cases, in March 2020, when the detection capacity of the health system was infinitely lower.

Despite the skyrocketing level of contagion from this wave, the situation is far from similar to that of the first wave or the third. During the peak of infections in January of this year, after the Christmas holidays, the incidence was much lower than the current one, of 795 infections per 100,000 inhabitants, but the deaths were much higher than those registered, for example, this Thursday .

The peak of deaths from that wave, somewhat after the record of infections, was 724 deaths in one day, on February 2. Yesterday, the authorities registered 74 deaths in 24 hours.

The situation is also very different if you look at the hospital occupation. At that time, the ICU occupancy percentage exceeded 35% at the national level and some communities recorded data above 60%. Regarding the occupation of conventional beds, Spain registered numbers above 20%.

The numbers in the latest report show a general occupation of hospitals with COVID patients of 8.81%. The communities with the worst data, Euskadi, Madrid or Catalunya, are around 12%. Regarding the ICUs, Catalonia, with 37.41% occupancy, or Eskadi and the Valencian Community, with 27% and 26 respectively, are the autonomous regions with the worst data. The national average is 19%.

All this mainly due to vaccination. At that time, only a few thousand doses had been given, after the start of the campaign in late December. At the moment, Spain is one of the countries with the best vaccination percentage in the world: 79.8% of the population has the complete vaccination schedule and 81.7% has received at least the first puncture.