Madrid, Apr 19 (efe-epa).- Spanish health authorities on Sunday said 410 coronavirus patients had died in the last 24 hours, the lowest figure since 22 March.
A total of 20,453 Covid-19 related deaths have been registered in Spain since the outbreak began, making it the third worst country globally in terms of fatalities behind the United States and Germany, according to latest figures from the health ministry.
“The fatalities, it is sad, they represent people who were infected some time ago but today we have 410 deaths, clearly below the 500 we’ve had on average. It offers hope, although we have to be careful,” Fernando Simón, the head of Spain’s public health emergency department told a press briefing.
The number of new infections detected in the last 24 hours was 4,218, bringing the total since the beginning of the outbreak in Spain to 195,994.
The daily infection rate increased in Spain after the government boosted testing numbers and required regional authorities to hand over more detailed information, including the number of asymptomatic cases, at the end of last week.
Spain’s government said the change in criteria could lead to fluctuations in the data in the coming days.
At least 77,357 people have recovered from Covid-19 in Spain.
Simón said over 30,600 health workers had contracted Covid-19 but was unable to provide the number of how many had died from the disease.
Joaquín Díaz Domínguez, chief surgeon general at one of Madrid’s main hospitals, La Paz, died from coronavirus, city authorities said Sunday.
Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez was engaged in videolink conversations with regional leaders Sunday to discuss the proposal to extend the nation’s lockdown until 9 May.
The coalition government also announced the mobilization of 14 billion euros to regional governments.
The Socialist Party leader told the nation in an address late Saturday that the restrictive measures that have kept much of Spain’s 47 million people housebound since 14 March would be extended into the next month but that from 27 April children would be allowed to leave the house accompanied by parents.
Sánchez, who governs with left-wing coalition partners Unidas Podemos, has come under pressure to loosen the restrictions for children, who have not been able to leave the house for 35 days.
Spain’s lockdown is one of the strictest in Europe and citizens are only allowed to leave to buy food and pharmaceuticals or attend doctor’s appointments.
He said Spain would look at gradually relaxing the rules from mid-May.
The extension must get the backing of Spanish lawmakers in Parliament. EFE-EPA