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The Covid passport has arrived in Catalonia to stay. From next weekend it will be mandatory to present it at all weddings, banquets and celebrations where there is dancing that take place at indoor venues, hotels or restaurants. To implement this measure, however, endorsement from the High Court of Catalonia will be required, as it was in the other similar measure already in place: the use of the Covid passport, otherwise known as the Digital Covid Certificate, to enter nightlife venues.

In this regard, the Procicat committee has also determined that Catalonia's current measures against the coronavirus will be extended for two more weeks, these are the measures that have been in force unchanged since 22nd October (and almost all of them since the major easing-up on 15th October). Still, the confirmation has to wait because the judges of the Catalan High Court have the last word.

Thus, whatever happens it will still be prohibited to eat and drink on the street between 1am and 6am. In addition, the ban on alcohol sales at retail stores between 10pm and 6am will also remain in force. 

Since October 22nd, 100% occupancy has been possible at cultural facilities - such as theatres and cinemas - as well as at both indoor and outdoor sports venues, and at bars and restaurants. On October 22nd, maximum occupancy at nightlife venues went up to 80% of capacity (previously it had been 70%) - where you will also need your Covid passport to get in, of course.

Remember - masks are still mandatory in indoor spaces. In outdoor spaces, when you can't maintain a safe interpersonal distance, you are also still required to wear a mask.

What does the data say?

The trend of the coronavirus pandemic in Catalonia has changed. If until recently all the indicators were moving downward, with a certain stagnation, now the trend is upward again. Daily new cases are close to 500 at present: the Catalan health department reported 481 cases in the last 24 hours; 327 on Tuesday and 216 on Monday. However, it should be borne in mind that this is not a normal week, because there has been a holiday, and days when tests are done affect the daily rate. 

Hospital admissions and the number of patients in ICUs are key to see how the pandemic is evolving - but, of course, they lag well behind any new upswing in cases. The health authorities have reported a total of 339 hospitalised cases in Catalonia (1 fewer than yesterday). The coronavirus peak in terms of hospital beds occupied was reached on January 24th this year, with 3,038. Current intensive care patients rise one, from 85 to 86.

The EPG outbreak risk is at 56 points, one more than yesterday, while the Rt or transmission rate is 1.13, 0.03 more than yesterday. In other words, every 100 people with the virus will pass it on to 113, that is, the pandemic is at present growing in Catalonia, but at a very low level. The IA14, indicating new cases accumulated in the last 14 days per 100,000 inhabitants sits at 52.07, a figure has risen in Catalonia in recent days but again, is still lower than at any other interval since July 2020.



Main image: scene from a wedding / Unsplash