The two-week barrier without cases is an important milestone during a pandemic. Still, a second incubation period that will also last 14 days will allow a margin for Asturias’ epidemiological bulletins to confirm that the country is effectively free of the virus.
The first bulletin to reveal the absence of new cases in this Spanish community was last Friday, something that has been repeated since then. Only Ceuta – a much smaller and more isolated region, with 85 thousand inhabitants – had already achieved this feat, just one day before Asturias, where a million people live.
“The tests [ao novo coronavírus] are persistently negative ”, guaranteed the Asturian health official Luis Hevia. The community university hospital, where most tests are carried out, has analyzed about 800 harvests daily to ensure that the virus is not circulating silently.
“We are working so hard and with the same routine to detect cases and define protocols that we were not even aware that we reached two weeks without new infections”, he admitted to the The country Rafael Cofiño, director of Public Health for the principality.
“The incidence was almost always very low, except when there were peaks. If we look at the graph in its entirety, the peaks were always times of a lot of testing, because when we found a case we tested the whole surrounding environment”, He explained. Something that happened last in late May, when an outbreak was detected in a nursing home.
Vacation zones under surveillance
At the moment, the principality’s health authorities are also attentive to the holiday home areas where many people arrive at this time of year, coming from outside Asturias. “The idea is to continue what we are already doing, detecting cases both in the most populated areas and in more tourist places, very quickly”, clarified Cofiño.
“After this great effort that we have made, we do not want to let our guard down,” said Blanca Aranda, chief of staff of the Ministry of Health. “We know that, with the summer, outsiders will arrive and that the virus is very likely to return, so we have to be very attentive so that we can locate it in a timely manner and interrupt the transmission chains as soon as possible ”.
In the whole of Spain, after several weeks of improvements in the number of cases, the situation has recently worsened due to localized outbreaks. On Sunday the country registered 118 new cases. In the past seven days, 343 infections have emerged, more than double the number seen a few days earlier.