The Catalan Health Department has reported 78 new deaths from coronavirus today, the highest daily figure since 7th May (82 deaths). Throughout the summer, this figure was kept to under 20 a day. It remains to be seen now whether this a new upwards trend or is a technical adjustment due to a delay in data reporting.
According to data published today by the Health Department, the number of people who are infected with coronavirus in Catalonia remains out of control. Following the clear upward trend of recent, today the Government notified of 5,626 new cases, i.e. almost a thousand more than yesterday. In total, at least 222,571 people have been infected with covid-19 in Catalonia since the beginning of the pandemic. At this point 13.30% of tests are coming back positives, a figure which has doubled in the last month.
This continuous increase in new cases of coronavirus has a direct impact on the activity of Catalan hospitals. Right now there are 2,387 patients who are diagnosed with the virus (182 more than yesterday) and more patients continue to arrive in intensive care every day: there are now 434 (36 more than yesterday).
The next days will be key
As for EPG, which measures the potential growth of the pandemic, it has fallen very slightly from 840 to 838. Although Wednesday registered a sudden drop from 887 points the day before, the experts consulted by the ARA attribute this change to a delay in reporting the data rather than to a substantial improvement in the epidemiological situation. In recent days, laboratories have begun to become overwhelmed and test results are taking more than two days to be delivered. "If the decline persists for a few more days, we will have to start thinking that it is improving", explains Clara Prats, a researcher at Catalonia Polytechnic University.
The speed of contagion, or R number, has fallen from 1.38 to 1.34. Again, it will be necessary to wait a few days to confirm an eventual downward trend. Another indicator that is considered relevant for monitoring the evolution of the pandemic is still out of control: the cumulative incidence per 100,000 inhabitants over 14 days now stands at 654.64 points (yesterday it was at 634.42). This number, which allows us to estimate how many people have been infected and therefore may have the capacity to spread the disease in a territory in proportion to its population, has been rising worryingly for weeks. To give a not too distant example: on September 17 this figure stood at 188.