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Salvador Illa, left.
Spanish Health ministry resisting calls for stay-at-home lockdown

Spanish Health ministry resisting calls for stay-at-home lockdown

Salvador Illa said that there should be no need to go further if the devolved regions used their existing powers to the limits within the current state of alarm rules

SUR

Friday, 6 November 2020, 11:58

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The national Health ministry was this week resisting calls for a tougher, home lockdown of the population. Faced with the expiry of the national curfew order after Sunday night (8 November), Health minister Salvador Illa said that he was convinced that if the devolved regions used their existing powers to the limits within the current state of alarm rules, there should be no need to go further. He added that two to three weeks were needed to see if the current measures were working.

Sources said this week that the Castilla-León region had asked Illa to be able to confine people in their homes again, adding to calls from the Asturias region on Monday and the Spanish north African cities of Ceuta and Melilla. Several regions are worried their hospitals are about to overflow.

The government added 21,908 new cases to its national daily rolling total on Thursday evening, with Madrid, Catalonia, Basque Country, Aragón and Galicia heading the list.

There was good news from Madrid this week, however, where case rates have dropped dramatically from their latest peak a month ago.

The 14-day case rate per 100,000 people in Madrid fell to 359 on 1 November, down from 813 at the end of September. The regional government claimed the credit, with its limited, district lockdown policy.

On Thursday, the prime minister, Pedro Sánchez called for "collective discipline", saying a vaccine would arrive within six months.

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