Portugal: Hospitals near full COVID-19 capacity


Portugal said on Saturday that due to the surge in infections that prompted authorities to send some critically ill patients to the Portuguese archipelago, the intensive care unit (ICU) set up on its mainland for COVID-19 cases only had 7 empty beds. 


According to data from the Ministry of Health, of the 850 ICU beds allocated to COVID-19 cases on its mainland, 843 beds have been recorded. This country of 10 million people has added 420 ICU beds for patients suffering from other diseases. 


The Ministry of Health said that the number of daily infections was 12,435, which was a drop from Thursday’s record, but 293 people died. 


According to the data tracker, Portugal has so far reported 12,179 COVID-19 deaths and 711,018 deaths, which is the 7-day rolling average of per capita cases and deaths in the world. 


An association representing funeral homes said that public hospitals also ran out of cold storage space to store dead bodies. Some hospitals have installed cold containers to reduce the pressure on the morgue. 


Ricardo Jorge of the Portuguese Institute of Health told Lusa News Agency that this variant is likely to account for 65% of new COVID-19 cases within three weeks. 


Portugal has extended the embargo period to mid-February and imposed strict travel restrictions.

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