“Madrid is special because the health of Madrid is the health of Spain,” Spanish Health Minister Salvador Illa told a news conference Wednesday as he announced the measures, calling the situation “complex” and “worrying.”
The restrictions will apply to municipalities with more than 500 cases per 100,000 people in the past 14 days, where the number of positive cases surpasses 10% of all diagnostic tests or where Covid-19 patients make up more than 35% of occupied ICU beds.
Madrid reported 1,586 new infections Wednesday, or 40% of the national increase. Its regional government opposed the measures, arguing that the outbreak was under control.
The sweeping confinement echoes strict new measures that are being introduced in many countries across the continent as a second wave grips Europe.
Professor Gail Carson, Vice Chair of the Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network, told CNN “we must take the recent surges of Covid-19 in Europe seriously and continue to do all we can as part of a community to limit the spread.”
“The virus creates a collective need, which merits a…