Spain’s daily coronavirus infections hit highest since May 10


FILE PHOTO: A health worker wearing a protective mask walks past a field hospital outside Arnau de Vilanova hospital, in the city of Lleida, to control the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Lleida, Spain, July 13, 2020. REUTERS/Nacho Doce

July 16, 2020

BARCELONA (Reuters) – Spain reported the steepest daily jump in coronavirus infections in over two months on Thursday, with 580 new cases registered as of the previous day, up from 390 reported on Wednesday and with the regions of Aragon and Catalonia leading the increase.

Authorities have reimposed restrictions in some areas of Catalonia, including home confinement in the Lleida area affecting some 160,000 people, and health officials there said measures would have to be taken in the capital Barcelona, but gave no further details.

Over 170 localised outbreaks have emerged across Spain since it lifted its nationwide lockdown – one of the strictest in Europe, on June 21, with Catalonia at the epicentre of new outbreaks.

Spain’s health ministry put the number of cases confirmed over the past 24 hours in the region at 142, up from 91 the previous day. In Aragon in the east, the number of infections jumped to 266 from 160, according to the health ministry.

The Catalan health authority, which counts both confirmed and suspected cases, said the number soared to 1,293 overnight, the highest since at least May 18, when the counting methodology changed.

The Catalan capital – home to 1.6 million people and one of Europe’s most visited cities – tripled its number of coronavirus cases from last week.

Authorities have also imposed some restrictions in three neighbourhoods of a Barcelona suburb that houses some 260,000 people.

(Reporting by Joan Faus, Jesus Aguado, Clara-Laeila Laudette, editing by Andrei Khalip; Editing by Toby Chopra)