Portugal braces for record COVID-19 cases as Omicron spreads

Portugal braces for record COVID-19 cases as Omicron spreads ...

LISBON, Nov. 22 - Portugal's health minister predicted the Omicron variant might create a record number of infections in the coming days, after the recent revelations revealed almost 99,000 new cases; it was the highest since early February and increased from 5754 the previous day.

Although Portugal's most widely used vaccine has one of the world's highest levels, with approximately 87 percent of its 10 million population fully inoculated, daily infections are again coming to a new level - from the worst wave that the country has endured in the last two months of the year.

"Chape the clock will be very well met in the next few days," he said in an interview with TVI Television.

Portugal reported record 16 432 cases in January, when the public system was at the forefront of the collapse.

Deaths and hospitalisations are much lower than those who suffered. In fact, 909 people have COVID-19 in hospital in a year compared to 6-869 patients on Feb. 1.

The 14-day infection rate has more than doubled since last month, reaching 579 per 100,000 people on Wednesday, official data showed. About half of the new coronavirus cases in Portugal are due to the Omicron variant.

The government announced new curbs on Tuesday, the nightclubs and bars to shut and tidie people for at least two weeks in advance of Christmas.

Prime Minister Antonio Costa has asked people to limit their contacts as much as they can.

Portugal has increased coronavirus testing to an average of 133,000 tests per day, but as holiday celebrations get more and more demand grows, a few supermarkets are running out of kits and few pharmacies have parking space.

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