COVID-19: Spain records 812 deaths

Spain reported 812 coronavirus deaths on Monday, a slight decline on the previous day’s toll.

The total number of fatalities rose to 7,340 in the past 24 hours, from 6,528 Sunday, according to Health Ministry data. The number of confirmed cases increased to 85,195 from 78,797.

As Spain battles Europe’s worst outbreak after Italy, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez on Saturday announced plans for even tighter restrictions on public life, without specifying what they might be.

The government is trying to balance the need to ease the burden on the health service by limiting social interaction, while also seeking to mitigate the economic impact of a near-total nationwide lockdown.

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The strain on Spanish hospitals was highlighted at the weekend when the number of patients who require intensive care surpassed the number of available beds. Hotels and conference centers are being used as make-shift clinics and the army has been deployed across the country to assist.

Sanchez has joined French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte in calling for a joint European economic response, including shared bond issuance, which Germany, the Netherlands and Austria oppose.

The government also announced Monday that Fernando Simon, Spain’s leading medical expert in the fight against the pandemic, is awaiting confirmation that he has the virus after it was detected Sunday night.

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