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President Quim Torra has delivered a stern message to the Catalan public in response to the increase in new coronavirus infections in Catalonia, calling for "a much greater effort" to bring down the numbers of new Covid-19 cases before September's return to school and work after the summer holidays. 

The Catalan president asked for an "absolute focus on this emergency," in a message shared this Friday on Twitter. Torra warned that Catalans have "three decisive weeks" ahead to reduce the expansion of Covid-19 in order to head back to work and school "with the maximum guarantees".

This is not Torra's first warning to the citizens of Catalonia this week. On Wednesday he had already warned that the Catalan authorities would take "more drastic" measures to curb the coronavirus if the upward trend in new infections in Catalonia continued. For that reason he stressed the need to comply with the three basic measures to avoid infection: wear a mask, maintain safe distances and wash your hands.

And those three measures are more essential than ever given the latest public health data released this Friday. In the last 24 hours, Catalonia has reported 1,055 new coronavirus positive results and 1 death. The total number of infections since the beginning of the pandemic is 118,097 confirmed cases and 12,922 deaths.

Pandemic is "not going well"

A similar warning was given today by the head of Preventive Medicine and Epidemiology at Barcelona's Vall d'Hebron Hospital, Magda Campins, who said that the evolution of the pandemic "is not going well", and that health workers are "very concerned." She set out that social interaction must be reduced in the face of the "out of control" virus resurgence.

Although Campins celebrated that in recent weeks "significant efforts have been made through drastic measures and more PCR tests", she noted that the number of cases "continues to increase". Currently, the rate of incidence of the coronavirus in Spain is 138 per 100,000 inhabitants.

Campins explained that in the last week hospitalizations have increased by 20%, with more than 600 people admitted and more than a hundred in the intensive care units in Catalonia.The Vall d'Hebron Hospital now has two floors practically full of coronavirus-infected patients.