The coronavirus outbreak may be peaking in parts of Spain, the country’s health authorities said as they announced another record single-day death toll of 832.
The number of Covid-19 cases in the country rose from 64,059 on Friday to 72,248 on Saturday, and the number of dead now stands at 5,690.
Between Thursday and Friday, 769 people died from the disease.
Despite the figures, the head of Spain’s centre for health emergencies said the situation was improving in certain places. “We’re getting there,” Fernando Simón told a press conference on Saturday afternoon.
“We don’t know exactly when we’ll get confirmation, but we’re getting close to the peak of the curve that we’re studying so anxiously. In some parts of the country, they probably may even have passed it – but we need to be cautious with preliminary information.”
He added: “The increase in cases is coming down in comparison with previous weeks, but it could be that there are cases that aren’t being detected in some regions.”
But Simón also warned that reaching a peak would not ease the pressure on Spain’s overstretched intensive care units (ICUs), adding they were predicted to pass beyond full capacity in less than a week’s time.
“We still have a big problem when it comes to the overloading of our ICUs,” he said.
“Patients who pick up the disease today may need a bed in an ICU in seven to 10 days. That means that we’re still seeing a lag between the control of transmission and the saturation of ICUs. It also means they’re going to be overloaded by the end of next week or the beginning of the following week.”