Most pharmacies run out of antigen tests as Christmas heightens demand
Tarragona pharmacists association urges people to buy only those that are needed
As Covid-19 cases rise, temperatures drop, and more people gather indoors – especially for Christmas and other holiday celebrations – rapid antigen tests have become a scarcely available good in pharmacies across Catalonia.
Some pharmacies have signs on the door indicating that they have none left, while others have been telling customers to come right after they are delivered as they tend to sell out quickly.
"Demand for them has multiplied exponentially," Toni Veciana, the head of the Col·legi Oficial de Farmacèutics de Tarragona pharmacists association, told the Catalan News Agency. "This has led to some stressful moments and made it difficult to find antigen tests in pharmacies.
Although he believes this issue will ease in the coming weeks, he called on people not to buy more tests than needed.
Catalonia reported its highest ever number of new daily Covid-19 cases since the beginning of the pandemic on December 23, 14,929. This is the fourth day in a row with over 10,000 new PCR and antigen test diagnosed positives, a surge that is largely attributed to the highly transmissible Omicron variant of the virus.
Official figures, released daily on this website, state that on December 23, there have been 1,174,484 confirmed Covid-19 cases since February 25, 2020, and a total of 24,434 people with or suspected to have had the virus have died.