Friday’s bulletin has brought good news for all regions, except possibly Madeira.
While Madeira has pronounced itself as “totally open to tourists who have had their vaccinations”, the truth is infection rates in the archipelago are nowhere near ‘under control’: 123 new cases in the last 24-hours (that’s 43 more than were registered in the previous 24-hour period). Compare that with the Azores – where not one new infection has been registered, and the problem is all too clear.
The only ‘good news’ for Madeira is that there have been no new ‘deaths with Covid’.
There have also been ‘no deaths’ in the Azores and the Algarve – while nationally another 2,780 people have been pronounced ‘recovered’ from positive Covid test results.
New cases of infection across the country total 1,027 – a reduction from yesterday’s 1,160 – with the majority falling in the Lisbon/ Vale do Tejo region (+410).
Lisbon/ Vale do Tejo is also the region suffering the most deaths in the last 24-hours – 28.
The north is next in terms of new infections (+250) but with 11 deaths – two less than registered in the Centre, which saw +140 in the way of new infections.
As we approach another month of lockdown – and another weekend where populations are confined to their boroughs of residence – the picture in the Alentejo and Algarve is of two regions with very little virus-spread (+51 and +54 new cases in the last 24-hours respectively). Death tolls also are low: Alentejo – 6, Algarve – 0.
Say reports, hospital numbers are now down to the lowest in terms of internments for four months (just 2,404 patients overall), but there are still 522 of them in intensive care.
According to expert opinion, it could take until the end of March to get numbers in ICUs down to the magic number of ‘below 200’.
Once this is attained . and seen to be staying ‘in place’ – the country will be ‘ready for deconfinement’: a moment that for many businesses may simply arrive too late.