At 17.00 on Wednesday (Lisbon time), Italy topped the worldwide death toll table (6,820), followed by Spain (3,434), Mainland China (3,270), Iran (2,077) and France (1,100).
Spain began to live the transalpine nightmare in recent days, with the escalation of cases of infection and deaths gaining momentum.
The area around Madrid, the capital, adds 53.15 percent of the victims of the epidemic in the country, accounting for 290 deaths between Tuesday and Wednesday and 1,825 victims in total.
The country this Wednesday fulfills the 11th of a 15-day isolation, which should, in all likelihood, be extended for another two weeks.
Schools, bars, restaurants and most shops are closed and the population confined to their homes. The economy practically stopped.
But the number of cases continues to increase. In 24 hours, the balance of infected people increased by 7,937 to 47,610. And hospitals do not have hands to measure with the range of more complicated cases.
The Spanish army has asked NATO to send fans, protective equipment and tests, revealed this Wednesday the chief of staff of the Armed Forces, Miguel Villaroya. Aid will help the civilian population, he added.
The Government ordered masks, gloves, tests and fans for an investment of 432 million euros, which are expected to be delivered over the next eight weeks.
The Minister of Health, Salvador Illa, guarantees that the first cargo should arrive within days, at a time when medical personnel, who have thousands of infected people, began to sue the state for lack of basic protective equipment.The most recent data point to an infection rate for medical personnel around 10 percent in China, nine percent in Italy and 13 percent in Spain.
In the Spanish capital, one of the areas hardest hit by the pandemic, authorities have started mass tests for civil servants.
also in Madrid, the police stood guard around the ice palace transformed into a makeshift morgue and that sees a constant coming and going of ambulances and hearses.
At Malaga Airport in the south, door to the Costa del Sol, thousands of
tourists wait for flights to return home, while sleeping on the floor or
in waiting rooms.
Homes across the country register an avalanche of cases of infection and the great avenues of Madrid and Barcelona are deserted, as are cities and towns throughout the territory, while fire trucks and tractors spray the streets with disinfectant in an attempt to clean them from the virus.
The drama of the older population is transversal in Europe.
Italy looking forward
In Italy, signs that the worst may be happening have appeared this time in
Lombardy, the region most affected by the coronavirus.
In the last 24h
296 more people died there, 106 fewer than Tuesday. There were still
a further 1,643 cases of infection detected, increasing the total to 32,346
A Nacional level, Italy recorded 6 820 deaths, the number
highest death toll in the world.
But the World Health Organization expects the country to peak this week.
According to ANSA, the Italian news agency, the deputy director of the UN organization, Ranieri Guerra, told Radio Capital that “the slowdown in progression is an extremely positive factor and in some regions I believe that we are close to the point of inversion of the curve, so the peak should be reached this week and then start to descend”.
Despite the warnings and quarantines, there are still those who are traveling for tourism and don’t win for the scare. This is the case of a cruise ship, the Costa Victoria, which tried to dock at the port of Civitavecchia to the north from Rome, after arriving in Crete, Greece, a 63-year-old Argentine passenger with symptoms of covid-19.
The remaining 726 passengers have been confined to their cabins since Monday. “There are many people on board with a fever” confirmed one of them, the Dutchman Hans Rijkelijkhuizen. He himself has a cough and fever and received paracetamol pills from the ship’s doctor.
Fifth in the number of deaths worldwide, France may be the next European country to sink under the weight of new contagions and deaths from covid-19, having already started to transfer patients to Germany, which has the largest number of beds in intensive care units.
The country counted until Wednesday afternoon with 22 304 confirmed cases, far from the 47 610 registered in Spain and 69 176 in Italy. And even further away from the 81,093 registered in China.
Fresh out of the European Union and still following a strategy of removal from Brussels, the UK accounts for 427 deaths and 8 227 cases of infection, a number that is expected to increase exponentially in the coming days, due to the weak combat measures initially adopted by London.
With 2,077 deaths and 27,017 cases, Iran still remains under a high risk scenario.
The United States, with more than 800 deaths and 60,000 cases of infection, were alerted Tuesday by the World Health Organization, to the high likelihood of becoming the next epicenter of the pandemic, after Europe.
Globally, the pandemic has infected more than 400,000 people,
about 100,000 recovered. Almost 20 thousand people died, and a quarter of
world population is under quarantine in about 70 countries and territories.
The European epidemic authority warned this Wednesday that unless they react quickly, all health systems in European countries will be short of intensive care beds in mid-April.
Most European Union countries have already imposed standards of total isolation.
The European Center for Disease Control has also warned that, as suggested by recent studies, the sars-CoV-2 virus does not lose strength in high temperature and humidity conditions, reducing the hope that the summer could help control the pandemic.