Thursday, July 16th | COVID-19 Daily Update
The number of people infected by COVID-19 in Portugal rose to 47,765, plus 339 in the last 24 hours, according to the epidemiological report released by The Portuguese General Directorate of Health (DGS).
About 81% of the new infections occurred in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area.
The data also reveal the occurrence of three deaths since yesterday, bringing to 1,679 the total number of fatalities from the new coronavirus in the country.
There were also 366 recovered people registered, having increased the number of recovered people to 32,476.
PANDEMIC IN PORTUGAL
António Costa warned yesterday, in front of almost all of the Government members, that the country cannot take another confinement and that the winter must be prepared now.
Concerning the worries about the possibility of a second wave in the fall/winter, Assistant Secretary of State for Health, Jamila Madeira, said that “DGS is preparing a detailed winter plan, which will soon be known”.
At the same time, Graça Freitas highlighted that there are “multiple measures” at the start of the new school year to prevent infections by the new coronavirus, stressing that the minimum distance of one meter between students should not be “considered in isolation”.
The director-general of Health also said that there is no evidence that reinfection could occur for someone who has already had COVID-19, but that there may be positive tests due to the presence of “viral particles”.
The NHS has ensured “more than eight million non-presential medical appointments” since the beginning of the year, representing an increase of 65% compared to 2019, said the assistant secretary of state and Health, Jamila Madeira yesterday.
PANDEMIC IN EUROPE AND THE WORLD
On the eve of the European Council, the current president of this institution launched the traditional invitation to the 27 heads of state and government who will be in Brussels tomorrow.
Charles Michel recalls that it is the first face-to-face council since the beginning of the pandemic, recalling the many lives lost across Europe and the blow to economies.
The ECB’s (European Central Bank) Board of Governors is not expected to announce further measures after the monetary policy meeting that takes place today. The central bank is expected to remain vigilant regarding the performance of the Eurozone economy while waiting for greater foresight about the economic impact of COVID-19.
In France, masks are mandatory from next Monday onwards, in all closed public places. The measure comes at a time when the country is experiencing an increase in cases of COVID-19.
The United States for the first time crossed the barrier of 70,000 cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of contagions in the country to more than 3.49 million, in addition to 803 deaths, said Johns Hopkins University.
Mexico recorded 579 deaths and 6,149 new cases, totalling 36,906 deaths and 317,635 infections since the beginning of the pandemic.
After deciding to open doors to tourism, the Indian state of Goa now decrees new confinement of three days, with 198 new cases registered.
Today, Brazil reported an additional 1,233 deaths due to the new coronavirus, a slight decrease compared to the number registered yesterday (1,300), with several specialists and representatives of indigenous rights organizations saying, in a virtual hearing held by the Lower Chamber of the Brazilian Congress, that the pandemic has caused an indigenous genocide in the country.
Research conducted by scientists from 69 countries found that 55% of the 1,261 COVID-19 patients analyzed had abnormal changes in their heartbeat. The study, funded by the British Heart Foundation, further determined that approximately one in seven patients suffered from some type of severe cardiac dysfunction.
Rui Pedro Galão, a specialist in infectious diseases, is one of the authors of another study suggesting that immunity through antibodies may disappear in a few months and explains, in an interview, its conclusions. The study looked at the immune response of about 90 infected people and found that many of them lost antibodies shortly afterwards.
According to Nuno Bernardo, administrator of the Confederation of Tourism of Portugal, after a “formidable” 2019 year, the coronavirus put tourism in a “paralysis”. So, to help companies survive and overcome the pandemic, Portuguese Members of the European Parliament demand more money and coordination between the 27 EU countries.
The first three months of the pandemic resulted in a historic blackout in income from hotels and other tourist accommodations, such as local accommodation. The total loss is already over 864 million euros.
American Airlines officials wrote to the airline’s 25,000 workers to inform them that their job may disappear in October, due to falling demand for air travel.
Contrary to the global trend, China became the first major country to resume economic growth, since the beginning of the pandemic, reaching an unexpected expansion of 3.2% in the second quarter.
On the other hand, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) yesterday presented a report that predicts an average contraction of 9.9%, in a region where the biggest drop will be that of Venezuela.
The main Portuguese stock index (PSI-20) lost 0.30% this morning, to 4,406.78 points, in line with the main European markets.
European investors are waiting for the ECB meeting, which takes place today. Also influencing the performance of European stock markets is the drop in the main Asian indices, despite encouraging data from China.