Catalan government intends limiting social gatherings to 6 people

Health secretary wants to amend current cap of 10 people to limit Covid-19 spread

Customers at a cafe terrace, September 16, 2020 (by Salvador Miret)
Customers at a cafe terrace, September 16, 2020 (by Salvador Miret) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

September 22, 2020 06:13 PM

The Catalan government is proposing to reduce the maximum number of people who can gather together socially from ten to six.

On Tuesday, Public Health secretary Josep Maria Argimon announced he will ask Civil Protection (Procicat) to make the change due to concerns at how the Covid-19 pandemic was evolving.

Speaking at a press conference, Argimon explained that the proposal will be officially put forward at a meeting on Thursday or Friday and that it would be immediately applicable if accepted. 

Cerdanya lockdown ruled out 

President Quim Torra raised the possibility of a lockdown in Cerdanya during a meeting of his executive on Tuesday but health authorities favor introducing more social restrictions rather than total confinement. 

This would bring Cerdanya and Puigcerdà in the north of Catalonia into line with several other parts of the country that have tighter measures in place, such as Barcelona and the metropolitan area, Girona and Salt, Reus, parts of Noguera, and parts of Vallès Oriental.

In these areas people are advised to stay at home except for essential purposes.

Quarantine reduced from 14 to 10 days

Earlier on Tuesday Argimon told broadcaster TV3 that from next week people in Catalonia who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19 will only be required to self-isolate for 10 days, down from the 14 days that have been the standard thus far.

Although the number of daily cases and deaths has remained relatively stable over the past few weeks, the announcement comes as the transmission rate and outbreak risk in Catalonia have increased for the first time in weeks.

This rise has coincided with the beginning of the academic year on September 14. Indeed, as of Monday, there were already 303 classes at 218 schools in quarantine

Coronavirus hospital admissions in Catalonia now number 808, up 20 from Monday, with 135 in intensive care, one more than 24 hours ago.