Spain reaches goal of fully vaccinating 70% of its population

Spain reaches goal of fully vaccinating 70% of its population
FILE PHOTO: A nurse prepares a syringe with a dose of the Moderna coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at Enfermera Isabel Zendal hospital in Madrid, Spain, July 23, 2021. REUTERS/Juan Medina

MADRID (Reuters) – Spain said on Wednesday 70% of its population had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, fulfilling a goal set by the government for August, while the incidence rate kept the decreasing tendency of the past month after a big surge.

With over 66 million doses administered, 70.3% of the Spanish population had received by Aug. 31 a complete vaccination programme while 77% had been partially vaccinated, Health Ministry data showed.

“We have achieved it thanks to the strength of the national public service, the effort by health professionals, the work from public agencies and the great awareness from citizens,” Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez tweeted.

The average number of cases per 100,000 people in the last 14 days in Spain decreased to 221 on Wednesday from 233 the prior day, according to the Health Ministry, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to over 4.8 million.

But deaths registered in the past seven days grew, totalling 352 on Wednesday’s report versus 319 on Tuesday, taking the overall number of fatalities caused by the virus to around 84,500.

Health Minister Carolina Darias urged citizens to remain cautious to achieve a lower incidence.

But in a sign of progress, central and regional authorities agreed to increase from 40% to a maximum of 60% the allowed occupancy in outdoor sports facilities, such as soccer stadiums, for the month of September, in a relief to clubs hard-hit by the pandemic’s impact.

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