Covid-19 indicators worsen, hospitalizations and visits to primary healthcare centres accelerate
Salud notifica 4.780 contagios y 11 defunciones e informa de que ya hay más de 91.000 personas vacunadas
BarcelonaThe pandemic is not giving health centres any chance to catch their breath, as they are already being hit by the third wave. While hospitals are still hospitalizing dozens of people a day on the floors and in intensive care units (ICUs), primary care has seen a 15% surge in consultations and follow-up activity regarding covid-19 positives and chronic patients this week. Most of the tasks they are performing are related to the epidemic. This Wednesday, the Health Department reported 4,780 new infections, despite the fact that only 2,440 correspond to the last 24 hours. The rest, as usual, are positive cases from previous days and are being added to the records as they are reported. The covid, by now, is already straining primary care emergencies and pushing the country's ICUs to the limit.
Healthcare pressure has been growing steadily since mid-December, but in the last week numbers have accelerated, coinciding with the forecasts of the authorities, professionals and statisticians. In the last few hours a total of 56 people have arrived at hospitals with complications due to covid, surpassing the 2,500 hospitalised - there are 2,501. Sixteen critical patients have also arrived, leaving the country's ICUs with nearly half a thousand serious admissions. With a total of 493 patients, more than half of the intensive care beds are now dedicated to covid; an increasing occupation that compromises the rest of the conventional surgical activities, such as cataract operations or prosthesis placements.
Primary healthcare centers have also increased their overall activity this week, especially in relation to covid-19. The president of the Catalan Society of Family and Community Medicine (CAMFiC), Antoni Sisó, figures this increase is of between 10% and 25% depending on the centre. Both nurses and doctors point out that centres are noticing the increase in cases of coronavirus in the last few days at the same time as they have taken on the vaccination of retirement homes. "Prevention overlaps with direct care", the president of the Association of Family and Community Nurses of Catalonia (AIFiCC), Alba Brugués, says. In any case, Brugués and Sisó defend that primary healthcare has to lead the vaccination process.
Deaths related to covid continue to rise, with 11 new deaths. In just one week, 365 people have died.
EPG and R numbers increase
As occurred yesterday, EPG has increased. If yesterday it went up by 63 points, today it goes up by 48 points and is already at 657 points (Effective Potential Growth has gone up more than 100 points in just two days). Unlike last week, on Wednesday the trend of the R number has changed. It was down since last Wednesday, but today it has risen again and is at 1.27 (0.06 more than yesterday). Therefore, now in Catalonia 100 people with covid-19 infect 127.
The Department of Health has indicated that there are already 91,382 people vaccinated in Catalonia, 15,195 more than yesterday.