Two possible cases of Brazilian Covid-19 variant detected in Catalonia
Health department also finds two further suspected cases of the South African strain
Catalonia’s health department has detected two suspected cases of the Brazilian strain of Covid-19.
The Blood and Tissue Bank notified on Wednesday that it has detected a partial sequencing of two cases of the Brazilian variant, corresponding to a group of friends and relatives of six people.
At the moment, the samples are not 100% sequenced, but the part analyzed so far has all the mutations.
The news of the variants could be confirmed on the weekend, but microbiologists are already convinced.
In addition, another case of a South African variant has been detected, and a second, related to the first, which is almost certainly also of this strain.
The first incidence of the South African variant was detected in Catalonia at the beginning of February.
The latest Covid-19 figures for Catalonia confirm that 539,046 cases of the coronavirus have been detected since the beginning of the pandemic, with 20,312 Covid-related deaths.
No ‘noteworthy’ easing of restrictions
Health officials have warned that there will no "noteworthy" easing of the current Covid-19 restrictions in Catalonia, which are due to expire by the end of the week.
An announcement on the extension of measures – or any changes – is expected by Thursday, but despite being pleased with the epidemiological data, the Secretary General of the Health Department, Marc Ramentol, told reporters on Monday the situation in hospitals was still an "area of risk," with more pressure on resources than during the pandemic's second wave.
On a positive note, Ramentol remarked that, with the number of cases per day continuing to fall, the third wave's peak of infections "is beginning to be quite far behind us."
The 14-day incidence rate dropped below 400 cases per 100,000 inhabitants for the first time over the weekend. It now stands at 338, according to the latest update.