Spanish virus cases soar by over 12,000

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The number of coronavirus cases in Spain has leapt by more than 12,000, health ministry figures showed Friday, the biggest jump in a 24 hour period since the pandemic began.

Spain this week became the first European Union country to surpass half a million COVID-19 infections, and it currently has a total of 566,326 confirmed cases according to the ministry—12,183 more than a day before.

The new cases were not all detected in the past 24 hours however, since Spanish regions that are responsible for sometimes take several days to send figures to the central government.

During the past two weeks Spain has reported between 7,000 and 8,000 new cases of the virus per day. On Thursday the country reported more than 10,000 new infections.

While the number of confirmed cases is sharply higher, the mortality rate is far below that recorded at the height of health crisis in late March and April, when nearly 900 deaths a day were reported.

In the last seven days the country recorded 241 virus deaths.

The disease has killed nearly 30,000 people in Spain, one of the highest tolls in the world.

Spain has also seen a surge in infections since a strict three-month national lockdown was lifted at the end of June, with Madrid facing the brunt of this so-called second wave of infections.

To curb infections, authorities have imposed fresh restrictions, ordering the closure of nightclubs and cocktail bars last month and making the use of face masks mandatory in public.

© 2020 AFP

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