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Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Spain - Statistics & Facts

Throughout history, the world has been a place of turbulence and uncertainty, stricken by political instability, economic downturns or diseases. In a very short period of time, our society had to face all those challenges combined, when the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic first broke out in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019. This coronavirus, which leads to an infectious disease that may cause both flu-like symptoms and respiratory problems, has brought the world to a social and economic standstill, revealing the effects of a pandemic on a global scale.

Spain has been one of the world’s countries most stricken by this new global pandemic, with its coronavirus cases outnumbered only by the United States. Spain registered its first confirmed COVID-19 case at the end of January 2020, when a German tourist tested positive on the island of La Gomera, Canary Islands. The cases of coronavirus increased very rapidly since then, spreading concern in the medical and political community, as well as among the population. The alarm was such that, in response to the rising number of coronavirus cases, the government decided to declare a national state of alarm on March 15, 2020, imposing a nationwide lockdown and urging social distancing to fight the outbreak. In this scenario, many countries announced suspensions in passenger traffic with Spain to curb the spread of coronavirus during March 2020.

The coronavirus disease does not spread evenly across the Mediterranean country, with some regions being significantly more affected than others. The outbreak spread particularly quickly in Madrid, Spain’s capital region, which had the country’s highest number of people affected by the disease. The unexpected speed at which the disease was spreading in Madrid during the first days of the outbreak was such that it led to an overwhelming amount of patient admissions in the capital’s hospitals.

In addition to the measures taken by the government to tackle the coronavirus challenge, the Spanish population was made aware of the risks that contracting this virus would entail. In this regard, many educational institutions and workplaces set a series of preventive measures such as providing hand sanitizers or promoting working from home, even though only four percent of companies shut their doors completely. On March 12, 2020, all Spanish autonomous communities ordered the closure of schools nationwide for a period that would last at least two weeks.

The impact of the COVID-19 was such that the Spanish gross domestic product (GDP) receded and the projected estimation growth was expected to considerably decrease. Tourism, one of Spain’s economic engines, was affected particularly severely by these circumstances. Due to travel restrictions from third countries for the European Union and Spain, some autonomous communities saw a significant increase in the number of cancellations of Easter holiday reservations. The Balearic Islands was the Spanish region that suffered the hardest impact, with 72.4 percent fewer reservations for the Easter break due to the pandemic.

The Spanish population knows the the situation is serious. Some 60 percent have raised their hygiene standards and, even before the country was put on lockdown, almost half avoided crowds to fight the spread of this disease. However, the optimism and joy that so characterizes Spain shows in the level of trust in the Spanish healthcare system, with almost 80 percent of the population certain the Spanish national health service is well prepared to face this challenge and succeed.

Find the most recent facts and figures about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in Spain also in Spanish.

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