On Saturday, the Madrid region authorities announced the registration of four cases of the new mutated coronavirus strain that recently appeared in Britain and is believed to be the most capable of transmitting the infection. It is the first to be discovered in Spain.
The second official in the health district authorities, Antonio Zapatero, told reporters that all four cases were discovered in people who had recently arrived from the United Kingdom.
“The patients are not in critical condition. We know that this strain is more contagious, but it does not cause more severe symptoms … There is no need to panic,” he stressed.
He indicated three other cases suspected of having the mutated strain, but the results of the tests that were conducted for these people would not appear until Tuesday or Wednesday.
The emergence of the new strain of Corona prompted more than 50 countries, including Spain, to impose travel restrictions from the United Kingdom.
Since Tuesday, Madrid has banned entry to all arrivals from the United Kingdom, except Spanish citizens and residents.
Meanwhile, Spain received the first doses of the Pfizer-Biontec vaccine against Covid-19 on Saturday, on the eve of the European Union’s launch of the vaccination campaigns.
According to a health ministry statement, a refrigerated truck arrived at Pfizer warehouse in Guadalajara in central Spain, carrying the cargo.
According to the ministry, the vaccines will be distributed after being repacked to the 17 autonomous regions of Spain to start vaccination campaigns across the country as scheduled on Sunday.
According to the ministry, Spain will receive 4.5 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine over the next 12 weeks, enough to vaccinate 2.3 million people.
The authorities plan to start vaccinating the elderly population and workers in nursing homes over the next 12 weeks, and then health workers and other groups most at risk.
The government expects between 15 million and 20 million of its population of 47 million will be vaccinated by June.
According to the Ministry of Health, Spain was among the European countries most affected by the epidemic, as more than 1.8 million people were infected, and 50 thousand of them died.