Barcelona Field Studies Centre

Barcelona Coronavirus - Daily Updates and Advice for Visiting Groups

Wednesday 8 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends this evening. There has been a small rise in the number of new infections, but the daily percentage rate of growth has remained constant. 1,396 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 31,043, a 4.7% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 107 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 3,148. This is an daily percentage increase of 3.5% and the smallest increase since the epidemic began. Since March 15, 37% of all coronavirus deaths in Catalonia (1,178 people) have occurred in nursing homes. As of yesterday, 94% of the 3,041 people who have died from the coronavirus in Catalonia were over 60 years old and 67% were over 80 years old.

The rate of daily increase of new coronavirus infections in Spain has upturned again today (+0.3%), with deaths declining (-0.2%). The overall trend in the growth of new infections and deaths remains downwards. The twentyfive days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has passed and the epidemic is in the slowdown phase. This morning, there are 146,690 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 6,180 more than on Tuesday, an increase of 4.4%. This is the third lowest daily percentage rate of increase in new infections since the epidemic began. The total of deceased rises to 14,555, 757 more than yesterday, an increase of 5.5%. This is the second lowest daily percentage increase in deaths so far.

Salvador Illa, the Minister of Health, reports this morning that: "according to the data updated this morning, the number of infected continues to decline with an increase today of 4%. A week ago the average increase was 7%. Two weeks ago, 15%. The increase in ICU admissions is 3%. One week ago it was 6% and two weeks ago it was 16%. Those who have died has increased by 5% today. Last week it was 9%. The people discharged from hospital are 11% more than yesterday. When we talk about deceased people, I regret to say that there are no good data."

The WHO, through its deputy director general, Bruce Aylward, has described as "heroic and innovative" the work carried out by Spain and its containment measures. Besides praising the work of the health professionals, he also highlights: "the amazing response from the population. The streets in Madrid and Barcelona, which are cities with a lot of activity, are empty, the stores remain closed ... there is a strong collaboration from the population, who have understood that you have to stay home to stop the outbreak."

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections was 47.3% on March 14, the day the lockdown was put in place and has gone as high as 200% during the crisis. Reducing the rate of infection is key to beating the virus, because each day of increases compounds on the number of cases the day before. That means a 40% increase in cases early on in the outbreak may only equal a few hundred more people getting sick, but the same percentage increase later on can correspond to tens of thousands of people getting sick in one go. A rapid increase would lead to the healthcare system becoming overwhelmed, which in turn would increase the rate at which people die as key equipment such as ventilators runs out. In addition, there would be many collateral deaths due to other illnesses that cannot be dealt with in time.

Spanish Government calculations at the start of the state of alarm indicated active cases of coronavirus would slow their exponential rise at the end of March.

The numbers reported represent only the more serious infection cases as people with mild symptoms are requested to self-isolate at home, without the need to call health assistance or be tested. A study published on 16 March in Science Magazine[1], has found that until Wuhan's forced isolation, 86% of all infections were not being detected, and each undetected person spread the disease to 2.3 other people on average.

Spain remains on lockdown, all borders sealed, strict regulations on movement of the population and closure of all but essential shops and services.

The Government of Spain has extended the state of alarm for another two weeks, until April 26. Spain will also restrict entry for most foreigners at air and sea ports until April 16.


The effects of the Coronavirus in Spain: by age

Tuesday 7 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends this evening. There has been a fall in the number of new infections. 1,324 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 29,647, a 4.7% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 133 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 3,041. This is an increase of 4.6% from yesterday.

The rates of increase of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Spain have upturned today, after 5 days of falls. The data must be viewed with caution due to the under-reporting that occurs on weekends and most Tuesdays see a correction with accumulated data. The twentyfour days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has been reached and the epidemic is in the slowdown phase. This morning, there are 140,510 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 5,478 more than on Monday, an increase of 4.1%. The total of deceased rises to 13,798, 743 more than yesterday, an increase of 5.7%.

Monday 6 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have reversed their downward trends this evening. There has been a steep rise in the number of new infections. 1,499 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 28,323, a 5.6% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 148 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,908. This is an increase of 5.4% from yesterday.

Between Sunday night and Monday, 205 elderly people who lived in Catalan nursing homes have died from the coronavirus, bringing the total number of deaths in nursing homes to 909 people, according to data released by the Conselleria d'Afers Socials this Monday. Deaths in nursing homes have accounted for 31.3% of the 2,908 victims so far in Catalonia. Under normal circumstances, 30 people die every day in Catalan nursing homes. Over half (56%) of the 634 Catalan nursing homes have people who have tested positive for coronavirus or who have coronavirus symptoms.

The rates of increase of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Spain have continued their fall today. The twentythree days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has been reached and the epidemic is in the slowdown phase. This morning, there are 135,032 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 4,273 more than on Sunday, an increase of 3.3%. This is the lowest daily percentage rate of increase in new infections so far, and the fifth consecutive day with the slowest rate of growth since the epidemic began. The total of deceased rises to 13,055, 673 more than yesterday, an increase of 5.4%. This is also the lowest percentage increase so far and the fifth consecutive day of lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. The data must be viewed with caution due to the under-reporting that occurs on weekends.

Sunday 5 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends this evening, and the epidemic in Catalonia is in the slowdown phase. There has been a steep fall in the number of new infections. 792 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 26,824, a 3% increase on yesterday, and the lowest daily percentage increase since the start of the epidemic. In Catalonia, 123 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,760. This is an increase of 4.7% from yesterday and the lowest daily percentage increase so far.

The rates of increase of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Spain have continued their fall today. The twentytwo days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has been reached and the epidemic is in the slowdown phase. This morning, there are 130,759 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 6,023 more than on Saturday, an increase of 4.8%. This is the lowest daily percentage rate of increase in new infections so far, and the fourth consecutive day with the slowest rate of growth since the epidemic began. The total of deceased rises to 12,418, 674 more than yesterday, an increase of 5.7%. This is also the lowest percentage increase so far and the fourth consecutive day of lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. These data are conditioned by the tendency to under-report at weekends.

Saturday 4 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends this evening, and the epidemic in Catalonia is in the slowdown phase. 1,298 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 26,032, a 5.2% increase on yesterday, and the lowest daily percentage increase since the start of the epidemic. In Catalonia, 129 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,637. This is an increase of 5.1% from yesterday and the lowest daily percentage increase so far.

The Government of Spain has extended the state of alarm for another two weeks, until April 26.

The rates of increase of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Spain have fallen significantly today. The twentyone days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has been reached and the epidemic is in the slowdown phase. This morning, there are 124,736 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 7,026 more than on Friday, an increase of 6.0%. This is the third consecutive day with the slowest rate of growth since the epidemic began. The total of deceased rises to 11,744, 809 more than yesterday, an increase of 7.4%. This is the third consecutive day of lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began.

The fall in the rate of increase of patients requiring hospital admission has been particularly strong. 975 people have required hospitalisation for coronavirus in the last 24 hours, less than half that of any other day so far recorded.

Spanish Government calculations at the start of the state of alarm indicated active cases of coronavirus would slow their exponential rise at this time.

Spain remains on lockdown, all borders sealed, strict regulations on movement of the population and closure of all but essential shops and services.

The Spanish Government has decided to extend the state of alarm for 15 days. With this measure, Spain will remain on lockdown throughout Easter until April 11. Spain will also restrict entry for most foreigners at air and sea ports until April 16.

Friday 3 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends this evening, and the epidemic in Catalonia is in a slowdown phase. 1,274 new coronavirus infections have been reported, bringing the total number to 24,734, a 5.4% increase on yesterday, and the second lowest daily increase since the start of the epidemic. In Catalonia, 173 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,508. This is an increase of 7.4% from yesterday and the lowest daily percentage increase so far.

The rates of increase of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Spain have continued their downward trends today. The twenty days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect, the peak of the curve has been reached and the epidemic has entered a slowdown phase. This morning, there are 117,710 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 7,472 more than on Thursday, an increase of 6.8%. This is the second consecutive day with the slowest rate of growth since the epidemic began. The number of deceased rises to 10,935, 932 more than yesterday, an increase of 9.3%. This is the second consecutive day of lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began.

Thursday 2 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends today. 1,656 new coronavirus infections have been reported, making 23,460 in total, a 7.6% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 242 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,335. This is an increase of 11.6% from yesterday.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued its downward trend today. The nineteen days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect and the epidemic has entered a stabilisation phase. This morning, there are 110,238 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 8,102 more than on Wednesday, an increase of 7.9%. This is the slowest rate of growth since the epidemic began. The number of deceased rises to 10,003, 950 more than yesterday, an increase of 10.5%. This is the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began.

Wednesday 1 April 2020

The rates of growth of new coronavirus infections and deaths in Catalonia have maintained their downward trends, despite upticks today. 1,813 new coronavirus infections have been reported, making 21,804 in total, a 9.1% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 244 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 2,093. This is an increase of 13.2% from yesterday.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued its downward trend today. The eighteen days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect and the epidemic has entered a stabilisation phase. This morning, there are 102,136 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 7,719 more than on Tuesday, an increase of 8.2%. The number of deceased rises to 9,053, 864 more than yesterday, an increase of 10.55%. This is the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. Fernando Simón, the head of Spain's centre for health emergencies, believes the country has already passed the peak of the curve. More than 22,500 people have recovered and more than 51,000 have required hospitalisation. Almost 5,900 have required intensive care, an increase of 5% compared to Tuesday. The transmission curve is not at the same point in all autonomous communities. Data for Catalonia (see below) indicates the peak was probably reached on March 23, with the rate of growth of new infections declining each day until upticks on March 29-30 related to delayed reporting.

Tuesday 31 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Catalonia has maintained its downward trend today, after an uptick in new coronavirus infections that followed delays in reporting over the weekend. 1,218 new coronavirus infections have been reported, making 19,991 in total, a 6.5% increase on yesterday. This is the second lowest daily percentage increase in new infections since the epidemic began. In Catalonia, 177 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 1,849. This is an increase of 10.6% from yesterday and the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued its downward trend despite an uptick today, suggesting the seventeen days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect and the epidemic has entered a stabilisation phase. This morning, there are 94,417 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 9,222 more than on Monday, an increase of 10.8%. The number of deceased rises to 8,189, 849 more than yesterday, an increase of 11.6%. This is the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. Fernando Simón, the head of Spain's centre for health emergencies, believes the country is getting close to the peak of the curve, with some regions already passed it. Data for Catalonia (see below) indicates the peak was probably reached on March 23, with the rate of growth of new infections declining each day until upticks on March 29-30.

Monday 30 March 2020

After several days of a downward trend, the rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Catalonia has increased for a second day. 2,616 new coronavirus infections have been reported, making 18,773 in total, a 16.2% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 262 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 1,672. This is an increase of 18.6% from yesterday.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued to slow today, suggesting the sixteen days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect and the epidemic has entered a stabilisation phase. This morning, there are 85,195 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 6,398 more than on Sunday, an increase of 8.1% and the lowest percentage increase in 18 days. The number of deceased rises to 7,340, 812 more than yesterday, an increase of 12.4%. This is the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. Fernando Simón, the head of Spain's centre for health emergencies, believes the country is getting close to the peak of the curve, with some regions already passed it. Data for Catalonia (see below) indicates the peak was probably reached on March 23, with the rate of growth of new infections declining each day until an uptick on March 29.

Sunday 29 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Catalonia has maintained its downward trend, despite an uptick in new coronavirus infections today. 1,131 new coronavirus infections have been reported, making 16,157 in total, a 7.5% increase on yesterday. In Catalonia, 184 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 1,410. This is an increase of 15% from yesterday.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued to slow today, suggesting the fifteen days of strict confinement of the population is beginning to have the desired mitigation effect. This morning, there are 78,797 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 6,549 more than on Saturday, an increase of 9.1% and the lowest percentage increase in 17 days. The number of deceased rises to 6,528, 838 more than yesterday, an increase of 14.7%. This is the highest daily increase in actual fatalities so far, but is also the lowest daily percentage increase in deaths since the epidemic began. Fernando Simón, the head of Spain's centre for health emergencies, believes the country is getting close to the peak of the curve, with some regions already passed it. Data for Catalonia (see above) indicates the peak was probably reached on March 23, with the rate of growth of new infections declining each day until an uptick on March 29.

Saturday 28 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Catalonia has slowed for a fifth day in a row, suggesting the fourteen days of strict confinement of the population is having the desired mitigation effect. 763 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 15,026 in total, a 5.3% increase on yesterday. On Friday, the increase in new reported infections was 10%, Thursday 12%, Wednesday 17%, Tuesday 26% and Monday, 33%. In Catalonia, 156 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 1,226. This is an increase of 14.6% from yesterday.

The Prime Minister of Spain has announced the total limitation of movements of the 47 million Spaniards except those who work in essential activities, from Monday, March 30 to Thursday, April 9, inclusive. All workers of non-essential activities must stay at home during this period. These workers will continue to receive their wages as normal and will have to make up their lost hours at a later date.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has continued to slow today, suggesting the fourteen days of strict confinement of the population is beginning to have the desired mitigation effect. This morning, there are 72,248 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 8,189 more than on Friday, an increase of 12.8% and the lowest percentage increase in 16 days. The number of deceased rises to 5,690, 832 more than yesterday, an increase of 17.1%.

Friday 27 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Catalonia has slowed for a fourth day in a row, suggesting the thirteen days of strict confinement of the population is beginning to have the desired mitigation effect. 1,323 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 14,263 in total, a 10% increase on yesterday. On Thursday, the increase in new reported infections was 12%, Wednesday 17%,Tuesday 26% and Monday, 33%. In Catalonia, 190 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 1,070. This is an increase of 21.6% from yesterday.

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections in Spain has slowed today. This morning, there are 64,059 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 7,871 more than on Thursday, an increase of 14% and the lowest percentage increase in 15 days. The number of deceased rises to 4,858, 769 more than yesterday, an increase of 19%.

Today is the thirteenth day of confinement. Spanish Government calculations at the start of the state of alarm indicated active cases of coronavirus would slow their exponential rise in one more day, approximately.

Thursday 26 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections In Catalonia has slowed for a third day in a row, suggesting the twelve days of strict confinement of the population may be beginning to have the desired mitigation effect. 1,348 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 12,940 in total, a 12% increase on yesterday. On Wednesday, the increase in new reported infections was 17%, Tuesday 26% and Monday, 33%. In Catalonia, 208 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 880. This is an increase of 31% from yesterday.

The Minister of Health suggests that the coronavirus data for Spain of the last few days indicates a change in trend as the rate of deaths slows. The epidemic may be about to enter a 'stabilization phase' as predicted at the start of the state of alarm on 14 March.

This morning, there are 56,188 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 8,578 more than on Wednesday, an increase of 18%. The number of deceased rises to 4,089, 655 more than yesterday, an increase of 19%.

Wednesday 25 March 2020

The rate of growth of new coronavirus infections In Catalonia has slowed for the second day in a row. 1,655 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 11,592 in total, a 17% increase on yesterday. On Tuesday the increase in new reported infections was 26% and Monday, 33%. In Catalonia, 156 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 672. This is an increase of 30% from yesterday.

This morning, there are 47,610 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 7,937 more than on Tuesday, an increase of 20%. The number of deceased rises to 3,434, 738 more than yesterday, an increase of 27%.

There are approximately 5,400 health workers in Spain with covid-19, almost 14% of the total found to be infected. This is a higher percentage than other countries such as Italy (8%) or China (4%).

Tuesday 24 March 2020

In Catalonia, 177 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 516. This is an increase of 52% from yesterday. 2,073 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 9,937 in total, a 26% increase on yesterday.

This morning, there are 39,673 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 6,584 more than on Monday, an increase of 20%. The number of deceased rises to 2,696, 514 more than yesterday, an increase of 23.6%.

Monday 23 March 2020

In Catalonia, 94 more people have died in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 339. This is an increase of 38% from yesterday. 1,939 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 7,864 in total, a 33% increase on yesterday.

This morning, there are 33,089 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 4,517 more than on Sunday, an increase of 16%. The number of deceased rises to 2,182, 462 more than yesterday, an increase of 27%.

Sunday 22 March 2020

54 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 245. This is an increase of 28% from yesterday. 1,221 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 5,925 cases in total, a 26% increase on yesterday.

This morning, there are 28,572 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 3,646 more than on Saturday evening, an increase of 15%. The number of deceased rises to 1,720, 369 more than yesterday evening, an increase of 27%.

Saturday 21 March 2020

69 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 191. This is an increase of 56.5% from yesterday. 501 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 4,704 cases in total, a 12% increase on yesterday.

This evening, there are 24,926 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 3,598 more than on Friday, an increase of 17%. The number of deceased rises to 1,351, 260 more than yesterday, an increase of 24%.

Friday 20 March 2020

A 'travel authorisation' that details the reason for your journey outside of your home will assist at police checks from Monday. It is not mandatory.

40 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 122. This is an increase of 49% from yesterday. 933 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 4,203 cases in total, a 28% increase on yesterday.

This evening, there are 21,328 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 3,254 more than on Thursday, an increase of 18%. The number of deceased rises to 1,091, 259 more than yesterday, an increase of 31%.

Fernando Simón, director of the Ministry's Health Emergency Coordination Centre, has warned that "the data is very likely to underestimate reality."

Spanish Government calculations indicate active cases of coronavirus will stop rising in about 8 days, when the number of patients discharged exceed new cases reported.

The origin of the Igualada outbreak has been identified by health authorities as a meal on February 28 attended by more than 80 people, many of them health professionals from the Igualada hospital. There was contamination by one person, creating two branches of the outbreak: a group of people infected within the hospital and another outside, of community expansion. The nurse identified as the hospital contaminator denies she attended the meal. David Roncero Carrera, an emergency doctor at Igualada hospital, believes the outbreak was probably caused by a patient admitted with coronavirus without being diagnosed. The nurse was most likely infected in the hospital, given that she had not recently travelled.

Thursday 19 March 2020

27 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 82. This is an increase of 49% from yesterday. 568 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 3,270 cases in total, a 21% increase on yesterday.

This evening, there are 18,074 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 3,396 more than on Wednesday, an increase of 23%. The number of deceased rises to 832, 91 more than yesterday, an increase of 12%.

The Spanish Government has introduced a modification to the state of alarm movement restrictions. From now on, an adult can go to the supermarket or pharmacy with children as long as they are the only ones in their care. They can also accompany the elderly to the doctor if the same case applies.

The effects of the restrictions on mobility are dramatic. Travel by air has reduced by 50%, the inter-city railways are at 2% of their occupancy and the suburban lines at 15%. On the roads, traffic is down 89%. Supermarkets are very well stocked but with very few customers, streets are empty and police patrols with load hailers instruct people to stay at home. Fines are issued to those outside without a valid reason under the state of alarm regulations. Shopping receipts and work contracts are asked for as evidence at police checks.

Wednesday 18 March 2020

14 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 55. This is an increase of 34% from yesterday. 836 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 2,702 cases in total, a 45% increase on yesterday.

This evening, there are 14,678 people reported infected in the whole of Spain, 3,500 more than on Tuesday, an increase of 31%. The number of deceased rises to 741, 250 more than yesterday, an increase of 51%.

The Spanish government has confirmed that all hotels will close in Spain from Tuesday, March 24.

Tuesday 17 March 2020

The European Union has closed its external borders for 30 days and prohibits entry to citizens of third countries except in exceptional circumstances. All Spanish tourists abroad have been advised to return as soon as possible while air connections are still open.

23 more people have died in Catalonia in the last hours, bringing the death toll to 41. This is an increase of 127% from yesterday. 472 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 1,866 cases in total, a 34% increase on yesterday.

Today, there are 11,178 people infected in the whole of Spain, 1,987 more than on Monday, an increase of 22%. The number of deceased amounts to 491, 157 more than yesterday, an increase of 47%.

The UK Government advises British nationals against all but essential international travel for the next 30 days.

Monday 16 March 2020

This evening, the French President, Emmanuel Macron has confirmed the closure of the EU and the Schengen area: "We have made a common decision among Europeans: from tomorrow at noon, the borders to enter the EU and the Schengen area will be closed. All travel between European countries and the EU will be suspended."

Earlier this afternoon, Spain announced the closure of its borders, so that from this midnight only Spanish citizens or residents, non-Spaniards who allege causes of force majeure and goods in order to guarantee supplies can enter the national territory by land.

Six more people have died in Catalonia, 5 of them related to the Igualada outbreak, bringing the death toll to 18. This is an increase of 50% from yesterday. 491 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 1,394 cases in total, a 53% increase on yesterday. This afternoon there are 9,191 people infected in the whole of Spain, 1,441 more than on Sunday, an increase of 19%. The number of deceased amounts to 334, 46 more than yesterday, an increase of 16%. One of the reasons for concern is the high number of patients requiring hospitalisation: more than 3,200 people are hospitalised (almost 40% of cases) and 410 are in the ICU (70% in Madrid).

The Igualada outbreak is the most serious infectious focus in Catalonia and keeps 70,000 people in four Barcelona municipalities in confinement. The number of infected cases has risen to 85, eight of which are serious. There are 37 health professionals affected within this episode, whose epicentre is the Igualada hospital.

The origin of the Igualada outbreak has been identified as a meal on February 28 attended by more than 80 people, many of them workers from the Igualada hospital. There was contamination by one person, creating two branches of the outbreak: a group of people infected within the hospital and another outside, of community expansion.

Sunday 15 March 2020

The Spanish health system is in danger of becoming overwhelmed due to the high transmission rate of the coronavirus. Yesterday evening the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, announced the government's state of alarm measures, severely restricting movement and closing all but essential shops and services. The UK government advise against all but essential travel to the whole country. Barcelona has closed all public beaches, parks and gardens, and suspended municipal works.

This afternoon four more people have died in Catalonia, all related to the Igualada outbreak, bringing the death toll to 12. 206 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia, making 921 cases in total, a 30% increase on yesterday.

This morning there are 7,750 people infected in the whole of Spain, 1,550 more than on Saturday, an increase of 25%. The number of deceased amounts to 288, 97 more than yesterday, an increase of 50%.

Saturday 14 March 2020

This evening the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez, has announced the government's state of alarm measures:

  • Citizens may only travel on public roads to carry out the following activities: a) Acquisition of food, pharmaceuticals and basic necessities. b) Assistance from health centres. c) Travel to the workplace to carry out their work, professional or business provision. d) Return to the place of habitual residence. e) Assistance and care for the elderly, minors, dependents, people with disabilities or especially vulnerable people. f) Travel to the bank or insurance office. g) Refueling at petrol stations. h) Due to force majeure or need. i) Any other activity of an analogous nature duly justified. Travel must be done individually unless with an accompanying dependent person.
  • All retail activity is suspended except for food, medicine, tobacconists, technological equipment, the press, pets, laundrettes and dry cleaners. The latter two are exempted for hygiene reasons.
  • Cafeterias and restaurants will be closed, but may provide home delivery services.
  • Crowds will be avoided and consumers and employees must keep at least 1 metre away to avoid contagion.
  • Face-to-face educational and university activity is suspended.
  • Public transport services of passengers by road, rail, air and sea are reduced by 50%. Commuter trains will work 100% and will not be affected.
  • Leisure time cannot be shared with friends who reside elsewhere.
  • Up to one year's imprisonment and fines of 100 to 600,000 euros for those who fail to comply with the state of alarm.

All the measures take effect immediately except the movement limitations that begin Monday, March 16 at 08.00. They affect the entire Spanish territory for 15 days and may be extended as necessary.

206 new coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia today, making 715 cases in total. This is a 40% increase on yesterday. Eight have died, three of them related to the Igualada outbreak.

There are now 6,200 people infected in the whole of Spain, 1,991 more than on Friday, an increase of 47%. The number of deceased amounts to 191, 71 more than on Friday, and an increase in one day of 59%. The number of recovered is 536. If the health system were to become overwhelmed due to the high transmission rate of the coronavirus where there is no cure or vaccination, there would be many collateral deaths due to other illnesses that cannot be dealt with in time.

The city of Barcelona has not been designated as an area of community transmission of coronavirus and protocols 'in phase 1, the containment phase' were maintained until the Spanish Government declared a national state of alarm on Friday 13 March.

Our risk assessment for infection of coronavirus in Barcelona is currently 'low', with caution advised in crowded areas, e.g. public transport, markets. Strict travel restrictions are now in place, and all but essential services are now closed throughout Spain for at least 15 days.

Friday 13 March 2020

The Generalitat of Catalonia has ordered the closure of bars, cafes and restaurants from midnight, except for those in hotels or health centres. It also orders the closing of casinos and gaming establishments, all activities of public shows and activities in private spaces, as well as the closing of shopping centres, except for those dedicated exclusively to food and hygiene products.

The President of the Generalitat, Quim Torra, has asked the central government to allow him to completely shut down Catalonia to stop the spread of the coronavirus with the aim that from midnight tonight no one can enter or leave. Central government is responsible for any cutting of ports, airports and railways and their response is awaited.

The Ministry of Health reports 190 new cases of coronavirus in Catalonia today, making 509 cases in total, after a change in the counting system. This is a 60% increase on yesterday. Overall, 35 people are serious and six have died, three of them related to the Igualada outbreak. Among those affected are 58 health professionals.

The Spanish Government has declared a state of alarm, but has not yet announced the measures that will be adopted. The Government could limit the free movement of people or vehicles, ration goods and services, requisition belongings and occupy factories and industries. The Government of Catalonia has ordered the cessation of all activities in shopping areas, ski slopes, gyms, discotheques and shopping centres not intended for food or essential products.

There are now 4,209 people infected in the whole of Spain, 1,205 more than on Thursday, according to the latest data. The number of deceased amounts to 120, 36 more than on Thursday. The Community of Madrid continues to be the most affected area with 1,990 cases, followed by the Basque Country with 417.

Thursday 12 March 2020

135 more cases of coronavirus have been detected in Catalonia today, a 75% increase on yesterday and bringing the total number of covid-19 patients to 316. There have been 6 deaths to date. The Government of Catalonia will close all nurseries, schools and universities in the region for at least 15 days from tomorrow.

According to the National Centre for Epidemiology, close to 15,000 died in Spain from influenza related illnesses in the 2017-2018 season,[2] and some 6,300 people due to influenza in the last season, 2018-2019.[3] So far, there are 84 reported deaths in the whole of Spain from covid-19 with 3,004 reported infections.

Wednesday 11 March 2020

The Department of Health of the Generalitat of Catalonia has confirmed a fourth death of a person due to the coronavirus in Catalonia. There are 55 newly infected, with the total cases of 180 representing a 44% increase from Tuesday. There are 20 serious patients and three people who have already been discharged.

Tuesday 10 March 2020

The Ministry of Health confirms 24 new cases of Covid-19 in Catalonia today, a 24% increase from Monday. The total number of people affected is now 125, 18 of whom are in a serious condition. Of the total contacts in preventive isolation, 400 are healthcare professionals.

Monday 9 March 2020

Two more elderly people in Catalonia have died from coronavirus. The Department of Health has confirmed the death of a man, 97, and that of a woman, 88. The man had been isolated in his nursing home in Barcelona. The second victim suffered from pneumonia and respiratory failure. She started having symptoms on February 27 and was admitted to a hospital in Barcelona on March 6. There are 23 new cases in Catalonia today, including two babies in a mild state.

Sunday 8 March 2020

This evening, the Department of Health has confirmed 29 new cases of coronavirus in Catalonia registered during the weekend. On Friday, a total of 49 infections had been recorded. There are now 78 cases, representing a 58% increase in this period. According to the Department, 24 of the 29 are in a mild condition, with 5 serious cases.

This morning, the Spanish Ministry of Health has registered 589 infections of coronavirus in Spain, which represents a daily increase of approximately 20%. The vast majority of cases have been imported from Italy. No new cases have been reported in the region of Catalonia since yesterday, with a total infected of 49.

Saturday 7 March 2020

Conflicting data from National Government and Local Government sources today. An afternoon statement from the Catalan Department of Health reveals 49 cases of coronavirus in the community, four of those affected are in a serious condition.

No new infections have been reported in Catalonia this morning. A National Government statement shows a total of 24 people affected by the coronavirus.

Friday 6 March 2020

Catalonia registered its first coronavirus death this afternoon, an 87-year-old woman with previous pathologies. She arrived in the hospital emergency room Thursday with a severe clinical picture of fever, hemodynamic instability and respiratory failure. She was diagnosed with bilateral pneumonia and tests proved positive for coronavirus. Non-invasive mechanical ventilation and treatment with antiretrovirals and interferon were applied but she died at 15.15. Public Health is now investigating how she contracted the virus, as she had no history of travel to risk areas. She is one of nine cases reported this afternoon by Public Health in Catalonia that brings the total number of people affected in the community to 46. The Secretary of Public Health of Catalonia, Joan Guix, has confirmed that there are a hundred health professionals in Catalonia preventively isolated after being in contact with infected patients.

The Friday morning update reports five new coronavirus cases in Catalonia, one serious, and four others in a mild state. All were in contact with people who had travelled to risk areas. The total of confirmed infections is 37.

Antoni Trilla, head of the Department of Preventive Medicine and Epidemiology at the Hospital Clínic (Barcelona) suggests that evidence[4] shows the virus arrived in Spain much earlier than previously thought. "What we see now are the most serious cases of infections that occurred several weeks ago. How many were there? For now we do not know. When did they start? We don't know that either." Antoni Trilla identifies 81% of coronavirus cases as mild and do not require hospital admission. Mild cases could be much higher, as they are so insignificant that patients do not visit the doctor.[5]

The dynamics of coronavirus make it easy to go unnoticed after landing in a country. In general terms, young and middle-aged people, who travel and move more, are likely to contract and transmit the virus. "They will also be the ones with milder symptoms and will resort less to the health system," says Ignacio López-Goñi, Professor of Microbiology at the University of Navarra.

Thursday 5 March 2020

The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in Catalonia rises to 32. Four of them are 'second generation infections', infected in Catalonia through contact with those who contracted the virus abroad. Approximately 600 people remain in home isolation in Catalonia. They are not infected, but are contacts of positive cases.

Wednesday 4 March 2020

The Department of Health of the Generalitat has confirmed six new cases of coronavirus in Catalonia, with the total number of patients affected by Covid-19 raised to 24. Medical services have located the origin of the infection in all cases.

Tuesday 3 March 2020

There are now 17 cases of coronavirus in Catalonia this morning, all of them in a mild condition.

Monday 2 March 2020

There are two new cases of coronavirus in Catalonia this morning, a 40-year-old woman and a 37-year-old man, both residents of Barcelona, who have been quarantined in a mild condition. The two were in contact with an infected person in Germany. This brings the total infected in Catalonia to fourteen.

Sunday 1 March 2020

There are six new cases of coronavirus in Catalonia today, bringing the total infected to twelve. The first two are men, one of 25 years and resident in Barcelona and the other of 26 years and resident in Milan. Both were in Milan between February 20 and 26. The third is a 62-year-old woman from L'Hospitalet de Llobregat who was in contact with one of the previously confirmed cases. The three others are a woman aged 20 and a girl of 16 living in Girona who travelled to northern Italy between February 14 and 16 and a 28-year-old man living in Barcelona who travelled to Milan from February 20 to 23. All three are in a mild state.

Saturday 29 February 2020

Two more coronavirus infections have been reported in Catalonia this morning: a woman from Girona who travelled to Italy and a man from Sant Cugat, who was in contact with another of the cases already confirmed. Reports suggest two of the 6 infected in Catalonia are doctors. Apparently neither of them have been infected through their medical assistance work.

Friday 28 February 2020

A fourth case of coronavirus in Catalonia has been confirmed late today. This is a 58-year-old woman from Sant Cugat del Vallès, who is hospitalised in a mild state at the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona. The woman had been in contact with a positive case in Germany. She joins three other patients with mild symptoms of coronavirus isolated at the hospital and 'evolving favourably.'
Researchers at a specialised hospital in Milan have managed to isolate the Italian version of the new coronavirus. "The epidemic is not new in the country and the virus has been circulating inadvertently for several weeks, before the first confirmed cases of the disease," said Professor Massimo Galli, a leader of the research team.

Thursday 27 February 2020

A third case has been reported in Barcelona today. This is a 22-year-old woman from Tenerife who visited the Italian city of Milan, between February 19 and 25, and then travelled to Barcelona. Once in the Barcelona, she went to the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, where she is isolated in a mild state. Her close contacts are currently being studied.

Wednesday 26 February 2020

Our risk assessment for infection of coronavirus in Barcelona is currently 'low', with caution advised in crowded areas, e.g. public transport, markets. Students should bring hand sanitiser (plenty of regular hand cleaning and avoiding touching the face recommended) and face masks (pro-active caution) in case the alert level rises. Official advice is that the risk varies according to the identified cases and that in the points where there are no positive cases the risk is low or very low.

So far there has been no contagion in Barcelona so protocols 'in phase 1, the containment phase' are being maintained. These focus only on the early detection of the possible infected. Everything is prepared in case the alert level is increased if an outbreak arises. In that case 'similar measures would be taken' to those implemented by other countries, such as Italy. There are two cases in Barcelona at the moment, both infected Italians returning from recent trips to Northern Italy. The first patient went to the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona on Monday, where she is currently in isolation. Clinically, she is well and has symptoms such as the flu. Her close contact group of 25 are in home isolation. The second case reported this morning (Wednesday) is a 22 year old man, with 8 close contacts under home quarantine.

The authorities here are avoiding alarmism, and news media tend to be very supportive in this respect. The College of Pharmacists of Barcelona have announced this morning that healthy people who do not provide care for coronavirus patients do not need to wear masks.

If any individuals develop coronavirus symptoms (fever, dry cough) while in Spain, the instructions are to immediately self-isolate, dial 061 and await a visit to their hotel room by medical personnel for testing.

We will update this page as further information is received.


The FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Spain travel advice - GOV.UK

Foot Notes


1 Chinese and American researchers have used the infection data from the first few weeks to model the temporal and spatial evolution of the coronavirus first in Wuhan, the start of the pandemic, and later in 375 other Chinese cities. To see how the virus could progress, they overlapped this information with the movement patterns of hundreds of millions of Chinese recorded by the telecommunications company Tencent in Chunyun 2018. This period of the Chinese lunar calendar begins a few days before the Chinese New Year. and it lasts for several weeks afterwards. This year, the New Year fell precisely on January 23. Thus they were able to estimate how the coronavirus moved. The work, published in the Science journal, has found that until Wuhan's forced isolation, 86% of all infections were not being detected. That is, only 14% of the infected were under control. The rest, whether asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic, continued to lead their normal lives. Thus, for many days there were two very different transmission rates. That January 23, there were only 801 documented cases throughout China, while the total number of new COVID-19 infections during 10–23 January in Wuhan city is estimated at 13,118 (documented and undocumented combined).
After Wuhan's closure measures, later extended to much of China, the dynamics of the epidemic changed in the city of origin. Between January 24 and February 8, the study authors estimate that the percentage of invisible infected people drops to 35%. They also come to light faster. For the first time, the basic reproduction number (R0) of the epidemic, understood as new infections for each infected person while sick, fell to 0.99. It was the first step in controlling the epidemic, although only in Wuhan.
Source: Science Magazine
https://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2020/03/13/science.abb3221
2 The National Centre for Epidemiology estimate that the number of those affected in the 2017-2018 influenza season was 752,000 people, with nearly 15,000 related deaths. Hospitalisation was necessary in 52,000 of the cases, 14,000 of them had serious complications and 3,000 required admission to the ICU.
Source: Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBER of Epidemiology and Public Health, CIBERESP)
https://www.ciberisciii.es/noticias/estiman-en-800000-personas-los-afectados-por-la-gripe-del-pasado-ano
3 According to the National Centre for Epidemiology, some 6,300 people died in Spain due to influenza last season, 2018-2019. The Influenza Surveillance System estimated that 490,000 people affected by mild cases of this pathology attended the Primary Care centres, in addition to some 35,300 confirmed hospitalised patients, of which 2,500 entered the ICU. Among the deaths registered in the country, 83% were older than 64 years and 13% belonged to the group of 45-64 years.
Source: DiarodeAvisos https://diariodeavisos.elespanol.com/2019/10/6-300-personas-fallecieron-por-la-gripe-la-pasada-temporada/
4 The first of the deaths from coronavirus recorded in Spain occurred on February 13, although the patient, a 69-year-old man, had travelled to Nepal, making it difficult to track the infection. The case was discovered by an autopsy.
5 Since 2010, both the governments of Spain and those of its different autonomies (health care is a transferred competence) have approved a series of health care cuts that weakened the system. In 2020, Spain budgeted 5.9% of its GDP for public health spending. This percentage was 6.77% in 2009. Catalonia is one of the Spanish autonomous regions that has cut the most in recent years, dedicating just 3.9% of its GDP to public health this year. The European average is 7.5%
Source: El Periodico: https://www.elperiodico.com/es/sanidad/20200318/recortes-7895906
A December 2019 FACUA report reveals that Catalonia is the Spanish region with the longest wait for a Public Health family doctor appointment. 74% of respondents expect a wait of at least one week.
Source: El Periodico: https://www.elperiodico.com/es/sociedad/20191215/catalunya-comunidad-mayor-tiempo-espera-medico-cabecera-7772135