This Wednesday Portugal registers 24 more deaths and 3960 new cases, a new daily record. The number of fatalities thus rises to 2394 and the total number of infected has risen to 128,392 since the beginning of the pandemic. In view of the new daily maximum of registered cases, the Assistant Secretary of State and Health, António Lacerda Sales, does not hide the “critical phase” that the country is going through in the fight against the covid-19.
As of Tuesday, 1794 people were hospitalized (47 more than the day before), of which 262 are in intensive care (nine more). It is the fourth largest registration of patients in intensive care units since the beginning of the pandemic, only lower than the numbers registered from April 5th to 7th (267, 270 and 271 admitted to the ICU, respectively).
The epidemiological bulletin of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) released on Wednesday (with data for Tuesday) reports more than 1657 recovered people, increasing the total recoveries to 74,001. Excluding these cases and deaths, there are 51,996 active cases in Portugal, 2279 more than the previous day.
With 2114 new infections detected, the northern region overtook Lisbon and the Tagus Valley and now has the highest total number of infections since the outbreak began, with 56,122.
These two regions account for 3219 of the 3960 new cases reported in Wednesday’s bulletin (81.3%), as well as 19 of the 24 fatalities recorded until midnight on Tuesday – plus 11 in the North, for a total of 1053, and eight in Lisbon and Tagus Valley, which now totals 955.
In the press conference following the publication of the epidemiological bulletin from the Directorate-General for Health (DGS), António Lacerda Sales revealed that the global lethality rate of the virus is 1.9%. In those infected with 70 years or more, this percentage rises to 10.8%.
Four more deaths were also recorded in the central region and 558 new cases were identified (304 deaths and 10,877 cases), with the other death being in Alentejo, which accounts for even more 110 infections (43 deaths and 2558 cases).
The situation report also reports 53 more cases in the Algarve (2579 cases and 25 deaths), 15 in Madeira (425 cases, no deaths) and five in the Azores (353 cases, 15 deaths).
Portugal will have a million rapid antigen tests
António Lacerda Sales revealed on Wednesday that the country will receive one million antigen tests to track the virus. These tests will arrive in Portugal using European funding through the Red Cross, from where 500 thousand tests will arrive, as had already been revealed on Friday by the Minister of Health, Marta Temido.
These tests will start to be used from the 9th of November, and the first tranche of tests, about one hundred thousand, will arrive in the country in the first week of November.
Accompanying the Secretary of State at the press conference was the President of the National Institute of Health Dr. Ricardo Jorge, Fernando de Almeida, who guaranteed that the country is at the forefront with regard to the use of these tests, adding that testing follow-up work in several other countries in Europe.
More than 6500 health professionals have been infected since March. They recover almost 70%
Asked about the incidence of covid-19 among health professionals, António Lacerda Sales made a total assessment of the number of infected in this professional group since the beginning of the pandemic.
“The total number of infected health professionals is 6596: 800 doctors, 1801 nurses, 1655 operational assistants, 166 technical assistants, 249 senior diagnostic and therapeutic technicians, others around 1925 and 4617 have been recovered, which means a rate of recovery of 69.9% ”, revealed the Secretary of State.
António Lacerda Sales says that the Government is aware of the concerns raised by the European Disease Center (ECDC, in its original acronym), guaranteeing that an effort is being made to strengthen the capacity of the National Health System.
“We follow ECDC’s concerns, just like many European countries. I would say that we have done everything in our power so that we can strengthen the NHS and we can reinforce what our health services are. Over the past few weeks, we have taken stronger measures to control the pandemic. We will continue to do so, taking into account what are the recommendations of all national and international organizations ”, he explained.
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