The Spanish government wants to extend the state of alarm, declared on March 14 in a bid to slow the coronavirus outbreak, for another 15 days.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez informed regional leaders of the decision during a teleconference yesterday.
The exceptional measure was approved by the Spanish Cabinet on March 14 and came into effect the following day. It was set to last until March 29.
Sánchez needs the approval of MP’s from Spain’s lower house of parliament, to extend the state of alarm.
If approved, the lockdown will continue until April 11, meaning that we will be confined to our homes during the Easter holidays.
MPs will vote on the decision this Wednesday, March 25.
Pablo Casado, the leader of the conservative Popular Party (PP), declared last week that his party would be willing to support an extension of the emergency measure.
Other parties also indicated that they would support the government’s efforts to contain the spread of the outbreak.
The move comes after Sánchez warned Spaniards on Saturday that the coronavirus crisis was set to worsen in the coming days.
The worst is yet to come, and it is pushing our capacities to the limit,” the prime minister said in a national televised address.
The latest official figures put the number of deaths in Spain from the coronavirus pandemic at 1,753, with infections at 28,572.
Of these, 1,785 patients are in intensive care, while 2,575 have recovered and had been discharged from hospital.
In the last 24 hours, nearly 400 more people have died from Covid-19.
Fernando Simón, the director of the Health Ministry’s Coordination Center for Health Alerts, said that “12% of all those affected are health workers” some 3,475 people.
The health expert warned that Intensive Care Units (ICU) could face even greater strain due to a rise in infections.
“The critical point for the ICUs will happen two weeks after contagions peak,” said Simón.