Health Minister Salvador Illa has described the latest coronavirus figures which show a slight decrease

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Health Minister Salvador Illa has described the latest coronavirus figures which show a slight decrease in day-on-day deaths as “a ray of hope.”

Another 6,400 cases were confirmed, the lowest increase in new cases for a week. The total of deaths reached 7,340 after 812 new fatalities

The total number of confirmed cases in Spain is 85,195, higher than China, by around 4,000 cases.

More than 46,600 Covid-19 patients have been hospitalised here, of whom 16,780 have been discharged after recovering.

The health minister also said that new rapid diagnostic tests will be tried out at the Carlos III public health institute before distributing them across Spain’s healthcare system.

Dr Fernando Simon, who leads the country’s response to the coronavirus epidemic has now tested positive for the virus and is self isolating.

His deputy, María José Sierra, higlighted the fall in the number of new infections since the state of alarm had been put in place, due to the confinement measures.

She also said the pressure on the country’s intensive care units (ICUs) will have to reduce before we can think about de-escalating the lockdown measures.

The deluge of patients requiring intensive care treatment means the Spanish Health Ministry is considering transferring coronavirus patients from overburdened regions such as Madrid and Catalonia to others with less strained healthcare systems.

More ICU beds are being prepared,” she said and respirators are being transferred to hospitals that need them.

12,298 health workers in Spain have been infected with coronavirus with 85 percent of them receiving treatment at home and they are progressing well.

Meanwhile the Madrid regional government has made a new provisional morgue available, in addition to the one that has already been established at the city’s Palacio de Hielo ice rink.