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Coronavirus in Spain full update (24 April)

Click here for today’s full report: Coronavirus in Spain (6 May)

ALSO READ: Lifting of lockdown in Spain – full details of all phases

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Report below updated in Spain at 12.45h on Friday 24 April.

The latest official figures* released by Spain’s Health Ministry in Madrid at 12h on Friday 24 April confirm that 22,524 people have now died from the pandemic in Spain, up by 367 on yesterday – but the lowest daily increase since 21 March.

Thursday had seen an increase of 440 Coronavirus-related deaths over Wednesday. Wednesday had seen an increase of 435 over Tuesday. Tuesday had been 430.

The current peak of recorded deaths related to Coronavirus in a 24-hour period in Spain was on 2 April, when 950 deaths were registered.

The Health Ministry has reorganised its criteria for the data collated of those infected with Coronavirus.

Figures released on Friday 24 April now show a total of 219,764 known cases of Coronavirus (Covid-19) in Spain – which is 6,740 more than the figure released yesterday, taking the same criteria into account.

However, the ministry is now also giving the figure of those who have only tested positive through a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test. This new figure is 202,990 (out of the total 219,764).

The current peak of recorded infections for a 24-hour period in Spain was on 31 March, when 9,222 new cases were registered.

92,355 people have now made a full recovery, an increase of 3,105.

Of the official figures released by the Health Ministry today – and based only from the total 202,990 confirmed cases through PCR testing – there now 58,191 confirmed cases of Coronavirus known to be in the Madrid region and where 7,765 have died (from the total 22,524 across the country).

There are now 45,544 cases in Catalonia and 4,393 deaths there. (Please also refer to Health Ministry data and regional discrepancies below, with regards to the figures from Catalonia).

There are now 11,881 known cases in the Basque Country (1,193 deaths), 11,536 in Andalusia (1,107), 15,365 in Castilla La Mancha (2,255) and 9,939 in the Valencia region (1,147).

Figures for those infected with Coronavirus in other regions* are now as follows: Aragón 4,867 (695 deaths), Asturias 2,234 (231 deaths), Balearic Islands 1,821 (172), Canary Islands 2,140 (128), Cantabria 2,084 (178), Castilla y León 15,692 (1,612), Ceuta 100 (4), Extremadura 2,718 (411), Galicia 8,932 (382), Melilla 107 (3), Murcia 1,468 (125), Navarra 4,581 (417) and La Rioja 3,790 (307).

A full breakdown in Spanish of the data per region, together with age group statistics can be found by clicking here. Please also see ‘Health Ministry data and discrepancies’ below.

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Health workers at the Hospital Clínic in Barcelona preparing to distribute roses to patients on 23 April 2020 for the day of ‘Sant Jordi’. (Photo courtesy of Hospital Clínic / @hospitalclinic / Twitter)


US President Donald Trump said on Thursday that researchers should try to apply their findings to Coronavirus patients by inserting light or disinfectant into their bodies.

‘Is there a way we can do something like that by injection, inside, or almost a cleaning?’ said Trump. ‘It would be interesting to check that.’

More than 874,000 people are now known to be infected with Coronavirus in the USA and there have been over 49,600 deaths related to it.

European Union leaders agreed on Thursday to build a trillion euro emergency fund to help recover from the Coronavirus pandemic, but specific details will not be confirmed until the summer [we are currently preparing a separate report on this].

The holy fasting month of Ramadan starts on Friday, as Muslims worldwide face unprecedented restrictions to counter Coronavirus.

Observant Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk during Ramadan and normally gather with family to break the fast in the evening. During the month of prayers, Muslims also traditionally converge in large numbers at mosques, especially at night. Due to Coronavirus, almost all Muslim majority countries have closed mosques and asked people to pray at home.

France registered 516 new deaths from Coronavirus in the last 24 hours, bringing its overall toll to 21,856 deaths on Thursday. The number of patients in intensive care has continued to decline. The French government has said that retail outlets could possibly reopen on 11 May, but not bars and restaurants.

Germany, which has won international praise for its mass testing of citizens, as well as the huge capacity in treating patients, is slowly opening more shops and businesses. Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that the situation is still ‘on thin ice’.

In the UK there are now 138,078 people who have tested positive for Coronavirus, and there have been 18,738 deaths. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who had been recovering from Coronavirus, was said to be ‘on good form’, yet no decision had yet been made when he would return to Downing Street.


Children allowed out from Sunday

Since Spain has now officially extended the ‘state of alarm’ lockdown until 9 May, confinement restrictions for children are also to be relaxed from this weekend.

Up to three children under the age of 14 accompanied by an adult are to be allowed out for an hour a day from this Sunday 26 April.

This was announced in a press conference on Thursday by Spain’s second deputy prime minister, Pablo Iglesias, together with the Spanish Health Minister, Salvador Illa. 

Children under 14 will not be allowed outside alone and nor will they be able to visit parks or playgrounds. Any daily walks with adults should not be further than one kilometre away from the home. Children will be able to exercise and run, however, as long as they continue to respect social distancing.

Pablo Iglesias (right) and Salvador Illa on 23 April 2020. (Pool Moncloa / JM Cuadrado)

The ministers also explained that the daily walk will only be allowed between 9am to 9pm – and that ‘peak hours’ should be avoided.

The adult accompanying the children must be someone who lives with them – either a parent or guardian, or an elder brother or sister who is over the age of 18.

Health Minister Illa said that 6m children across Spain will benefit from the new rules. A ministerial order will be issued this Saturday for the measure to come into effect the following day.

‘These supervised outings will have numerous beneficial effects on our children, both physical and emotional, especially in those who live in the most vulnerable households,’ said Illa. ‘Not all homes have the same conditions and not all lifestyles are the same. As a result, this is also an equality measure.’

Illa also stressed that whilst these ‘relief measures have been introduced, [the overall lockdown] confinement measures remain fully in place.’

Testing to be increased

Spain’s Health Minister also highlighted on Thursday the importance of increasing Covid-19 diagnosis capability and said that more than one million PCR tests have been performed in Spain to date.

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*Health Ministry data and regional discrepancies

The Spanish Health Ministry has not been giving complete figures for the number of people in intensive care units (ICUs) for over 10 days, because some of Spain’s 17 regions had been using different methods to collate these figures. There had also been discrepancies in how some of the regions had been collating the statistics for the number of deaths from Coronavirus.

In Catalonia, for example, the regional health department had only previously been counting figures for those who had died in hospitals. This was then changed to include data provided by funeral homes, which includes those who have died not only in hospitals but also in nursing homes, social health centres or elderly residences, as well as at home.

Last Friday, following discrepancies in the way that data has been collated, the Spanish government published an order in its Boletín Oficial del Estado (BOE)to clarify the criteria that must be used.

All regions must now report deaths and ICU admissions in the same way. A victim can only be counted in the death tally if they have tested positive for Covid-19 via a PCR (polymerase chain reaction testing) or rapid test. The same applies to confirmed infections.

The Health Ministry has also requested that each region send in the total number of infections divided into symptomatic and asymptomatic cases. In addition, they also require the number of PCR tests carried out from each region, the total number of people that have required hospital treatment, including intensive care, as well as the number of patients who have been discharged.

Salvador Illa, the Spanish Health Minister, has said that, ‘Spain is following a very strict definition of cases in line with international authorities, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). Anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 and then dies is considered a Coronavirus fatality’.

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Below are the numbers to call for each region of Spain for information and assistance in the event of possible cases of Coronavirus – as issued by the Spanish health authorities.

The numbers to call for each region of Spain.

Click here for further information (in Spanish) regarding Coronavirus from the Spanish Health Ministry.

Up-to-date WHO advice and facts (in English) about the Coronavirus epidemic can be found here:

Our previous reports on Coronavirus in Spain:

ALSO READ: Coronavirus in Spain full update (23 April)

ALSO READ: Spain votes to extend lockdown to 9 May. Children to be allowed out

ALSO READ: Coronavirus in Spain full update (22 April)

ALSO READ: Spanish government: children can go with adults to supermarkets, but not parks

ALSO READ: Coronavirus in Spain full update (21 April)

ALSO READ: Pedro Sánchez seeks cross-party ‘Moncloa Pact’ for recovery programme

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Editor’s note: 

At Spain in English we’re always keen to also publish positive stories and features about life in Spain – not just the current news. With all cultural and sporting events currently on hold, as well as travel and gastronomic excursions, we welcome on-going contributions from all of you who’d like to send us articles for publication. Although we are unable to currently pay for contributions, we will certainly credit you and share the articles across our social media network (if of interest) – and/or also link to your own blogs or other sites. We currently welcome upbeat, positive and fun articles – perhaps how you’re coping with the ‘lockdown’ in your own area of Spain – or how your community is responding, or recommendations of help to others. We have a dedicated ‘Opinion, Blogs & Spanish Experiences‘ section where your articles will appear. We will edit for clarity and length only – and we reserve the right to not publish. Articles should be sent via email to (preferably with a photo and credit details), and should be around 500 words (800 to 1,000 max). We will try to respond to everyone, but please be patient with us. We’re a very small team but with big ambitions! Please stay safe. Thank you for reading and following us.

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