Over 10,000 deaths and rising: Portugal’s latest numbers bring new maximums

The pandemic has now cost over 10,000 lives in Portugal.

Today’s bulletin showed a new record number of deaths in the last 24-hours (+274) – the majority people over the age of 80, followed by those aged between 70-79, says TVI24.

There are now 5,922 people being treated for Covid-19 in the nation’s hospitals (an extra 143 than there were in Friday’s statistics) and 720 in intensive care units.

Active infections are at the highest level yet (162,951). Recoveries are now standing at 451,324.

But the issue of ‘new infections’ appearing every day is seemingly relentless – with Lisbon leading the ‘field’ registering +6.135 new infections in the last 24-hour period from a national total of 15,333 (a new record itself).

With the echo of scientists’ warnings that the situation isn’t going to improve any day soon (in spite of the national lockdown), the government has been told to expect new infections to run at around 16,000 a day by the first week of February. Today this looks like it could arrive ‘early’.

Explains, tabloid Correio da Manhã: “the rapid spread of contagion of the British variant has turned the evolution of the pandemic even more unpredictable.

According to epidemiologist Manuel Carmo Gomes: “in the last few days, the Rt level (indicating degree of transmissibility) was coming down to 1. But this has stopped, and with this situation it’s impossible to see the peak. We simply don’t know where we are going to be (in a few days time)”.

Even with lockdown measures in place it’s becoming ever more clear that the pressure on hospitals will endure well into March. 

Says CM, the government “has admitted that the evolution of the pandemic will not allow it to reopen schools” when the current two-week ‘suspension’ runs out on February 5.

For today’s bulletin issued by the DGS health authority (click here).

The highest number of deaths occurred in the Lisbon/ Vale do Tejo area (122), with the centre overtaking the north for deaths (65 as opposed to the 55 in the north). The Algarve and Alentejo always come in with much fewer deaths – and Madeira and Azores suffer even less in the way of fatalities. But what is ‘remarkable’ in today’s bulletin is the surge of new infections in Madeira (now up to +117 in a 24-hour period) bearing in mind the region has been operating strict controls on people entering for months.

Regarding age groups for new infections, reports suggest the highest numbers have been found in the 40-49 age bracket.

ALGARVE has 233 patients battling Covid in its hospitals, 17 on ventilators

The Algarve was showing 5,074 active cases on Friday: 233 in hospitals, 33 in intensive care and 17 on ventilators.

Loulé is the borough with the highest number of active cases (1,024), followed by Faro with 838, Albufeira: 675, Tavira: 526, Olhão: 448, Silves: 340, Portimão: 331, Lagos: 239, Vila Real de Santo António: 292, Lagoa: 132, Castro Marim: 101, São Brás de Alportel: 63, Aljezur: 22, Vila do Bispo: 21, Alcoutim: 19 and Monchique with just 2.

According to Friday’s press briefing 4,841 people are recovering from infections in their homes.

natasha.donn@alagrveresident.com