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COVID-19 : The coronavirus accelerates in Catalonia: “dramatic risk” of the fourth wave

“The risk of a fourth wave starting from this situation is very dramatic,” commented the acting Minister of Health of the Generalitat, Alba Vergés, to define the current epidemiological situation in Catalonia. He has warned of the high occupancy of the ICUs and has thus defended the decision not to lift the restrictions for the moment.

Vergés has analyzed in an interview with TV3 the moment in which Catalonia is within the context of the pandemic, and has spoken of “fragile moment”. Therefore, it has confirmed that the Procicat has been a margin of seven days to observe the evolution of the infections and the incidence before making a decision.

As well has refused to give dates on which this relaxation of the measures could arrive, above all out of “respect” for people who have businesses and are waiting to open or do so for a longer time. It is preferred to wait for the healthcare pressure to drop and to see how the vaccination affects.

The virus changes trend and accelerates its spread

The situation in Catalonia does not finish improving and COVID-19 does not offer a respite. While in some autonomous communities infections have a downward trend, in Catalonia it is the opposite, accelerating its spread with a transmission speed (Rt) that is already 0.95, four hundredths more than last Sunday, and may reach 1 in the next few days.

What’s more, regrowth risk (EPG), the potential growth rate of the epidemic, has also risen two points and has been located at 263. And the positivity has risen to 5.11, four tenths more, and it is already above the 5% that the WHO considers controllable. Are already 2,029 hospitalized coronavirus patients58 more, of which 588 are seriously ill in the ICU, five less.

Regarding contagions, in the last 24 hours, counting the effect of the weekend, 798 more new cases have been added, making a total of 547,107, at a daily average of 1,446 infections. Y Deaths reach 20,506 since the start of the pandemic, with 36 new deaths, after an average of 42 daily victims in the last week.

What is it due to and what is expected soon?

Epidemiologists believe that the speed of spread may be caused by by the extension of the new strainsas they are more contagious. Besides, also the effect of election day worries, of which more than a week has passed, the reopening of the gyms or the extension of the hours of the hotel business.

Equally, another possible reason would be the relaxation of the population after the arrival of the vaccines, after so many weeks of restrictions or after the low temperatures that prevent more outdoor activities.

Faced with this situation, there is right now a scenario of uncertainty, not knowing if the pandemic will improve in Catalonia in the coming months. “From Health we have never worked in terms of saving summer or Easter”, confirmed Vergés, insisting on finding a balance and avoiding comparisons with last summer, in which “life was recovered, and this gave a lot of air to society.”