Spain passes one million Covid-19 cases

A boy sits among dozens of Spanish flags in Madrid
Spain is the sixth nation worldwide to record more than one million cases

Spain has recorded more than one million coronavirus cases, becoming the first western European country to pass that landmark figure, on Wednesday the country reported 16,973 infections and 156 deaths in the previous 24 hours, since its first diagnosed case on 31 January, Spain has now recorded a total of 1,005,295 infections. It is the sixth nation worldwide to report one million cases after the US, India, Brazil, Russia and Argentina.

Europe has seen a surge in new infections over the last few months, forcing governments to bring in strict new regulations to try and control outbreaks and ensure hospitals do not become overwhelmed. Spain was hit hard by coronavirus in the first months of the pandemic, and brought in some of the strictest measures to tackle it, including banning children from going outside. Like most European countries, the country lessened its regulations as case numbers dropped. Politicians highlighted the need to bring back tourists as a way to boost the struggling economy. The test’s manufacturer says it’s 93% accurate in detecting Covid-19 infection, but by the end of August new daily case numbers were rising by 10,000 a day, hospital admissions have ticked up by 20% in the past two weeks alone, while deaths have also begun to rise, with the toll climbing by 218 on Tuesday.

Lawmakers however are bitterly divided over how to handle the situation. Politicians in the national parliament were debating a no-confidence motion in Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez on Wednesday filed by the far-right Vox Party, while central government has clashed repeatedly with regional leaders over how best to proceed, in total, 34,366 Covid-19related deaths have been recorded, the health minister will meet with regional leaders on Thursday to discuss next steps.

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