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The hospital pressure caused by Catalonia's fifth wave of Covid-19 is still the critical element as this first week of August begins. In recent hours, the number of people currently in ordinary hospital wards in Catalonia due to coronavirus has risen again, from 2,227 to 2,292 people. Intensive care units show the same trend, with a net 10 new admissions in the latest figures this Monday, to reach a new total of 577. As is to be expected, these indicators of the Covid situation in health care centres, which peak later in any Covid outbreak, remain highly stressed, while other epidemiological indicators - incidence of new cases, Rt transmission rates and the EPG outbreak risk - have been falling since the peaks that they recorded during July.

Above: Total Covid patients in intensive care beds in Catalan hospitals (yellow = aged over 50, blue = aged under 50)

Above: Breakdown by age group, Covid patients in intensive care beds in Catalan hospitals, as at 1st August 2021

The indicator which tends to peak last of all, mortality, has risen slightly again and 10 deaths have been reported in recent hours in Catalonia. As a daily figure, this is much lower than other coronavirus outbreaks in Catalonia, but is quite high in the current context, with the fifth wave having so far been characterized by lower mortality rates.

Above: Daily total of deaths from Covid in Catalonia 

Steady fall

Thus, the other epidemiological indicators are maintaining a steady decline. Among the most striking is the number of daily new infections, which has gone down to 1,526 new infections in the last day, although this is possibly a "weekend" effect, and the trend may well increase again to around 2,000 cases daily during the coming days.

Cumulative totals for deaths (red) and cases (blue) in Catalonia 

The EPG outbreak risk continues to fall and stands at 671 points, 56 less than the previous day. It peaked at 1,962 on 6th July. The Rt transmission risk also remains at low levels - specifically at 0.76, which, being well below the balance point of 1.0, implies that the virus is not in an expansive phase but is retreating. Catalonia's Rt index reached its fifth wave peak on 3rd July, at 3.49.  

Curfew in 162 cities and towns

The seven-day cumulative incidence (IA7) is below 400 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, specifically at 359.10 cases. This is the average for the whole Catalan territory - but of course, for some localities the indicator exceeds 400 cases, which, if those towns have more than 5,000 inhabitants, makes them enter the list of municipalities with a night curfew. Below, the searchable list of the 162 municipalities which are required to obey the 1am-6am curfew for the week ending Thursday August 6th. 

Amposta, L'Ametlla del Vallès, Figueres and Solsona have reached the curfew threshold set by the Catalan government and thus have to enforce the 1am night-time curfew. On the other hand, curfew has been lifted in Sitges, Roses, Puigcerdà, Torredembarra and Tàrrega. However, all of Catalonia remains affected by the 12.30am closure rule for bars, restaurants, cultural and commercial activity, as well as the maximum group size of 10 people in public or private gatherings, and the ban on eating and drinking in groups in public places.

Vaccines jabs also steady

In line with the current Covid vaccination strategy that prioritizes the administration of second doses over first, in the last few hours 9,916 second doses and 6,165 first jabs have been given.


How many people have been vaccinated in Catalonia? (Yellow = first shot, green = second shot)

For an age-group breakdown of vaccination figures in Catalonia, see here.

Counting the number of lives saved 

Vaccination has prevented more than 2,500 coronavirus deaths in Catalonia since the beginning of the year, according to Clara Prats, researcher in the Computational Biology and Complex Systems Group (BIOCOMSC) at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya. She detailed that, today, without vaccines the number of daily deaths would be at least seven times more than currently - estimating an unreal current figure of around 200 fatalities daily in Catalonia.

The biologist also referred to the situation in hospitals, which would be extremely critical without the vaccination campaign. BIOCOMSC estimates that in this scenario there would be 1,200 people in Intensive Care Units at present (a figure that was seen during the first wave, when it reached 1,500). In reality, the latest figures show 577 people are in ICUs in Catalonia due to Covid. 

MAP | Coronavirus infections in Catalonia by municipalities and neighborhoods

GRAPHS | How is vaccination progressing in Catalonia?

GRAPHS | How is the coronavirus pandemic evolving in each part of Catalonia?

GRAPHS & DATA | Latest coronavirus statistics for Catalonia and Spain


Main image: A health worker walks through the ICU / ACN