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Canary Islands Health Ministry confirm all islands remain at current alert levels, 1 or 2

Canary Islands Health Ministry confirm all islands remain at current alert levels, 1 or 2

The Canary Islands Ministry of Health this Thursday confirmed this morning’s assessment from Regional President, Ángel Víctor Torres,  regarding Health Alert Levels in the archipelago, with the weekly epidemiological report from the General Directorate of Public Health, using consolidated data as of November 24, on health indicators for COVID-19, maintaining all islands at their current alert levels. This means that Fuerteventura and Lanzarote (where La Graciosa is epidemiologically included) continue at Alert Level 2 and Gran Canaria, Tenerife, La Palma, La Gomera and El Hierro all remain at Level 1, identified with a “green traffic light”.

Throughout the entire Canary Islands territory, between November 16 and 22, 1,696 new cases of COVID-19 were reported, representing a further increase of around 34% in the daily average of new cases, compared to the week before, when 1,270 cases were registered.

The average 7-day AI rate in the Canary Islands, as a whole, and by islands, increased by around 42%, from a daily average of 50.6 cases per 100,000 inhabitants, moving to 71.8 cases/100k in this last week. The largest rise has been observed on the island of Gran Canaria, although in general the trend has been increasing on all the islands over the last 15 days. This rise places Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Fuerteventura and Lanzarote at a high risk level in terms of the 7-day AI; La Palma and La Gomera are at medium risk; and El Hierro remains at very low risk level.

The 14-day AI rate daily average has increased on all the islands and, therefore, the entire region (Autonomous Community) as a whole continues to be at medium risk. Only La Palma and El Hierro are at low and very low risk in terms of 14-day AI and in Fuerteventura the risk is high.

The evolution of the AI (Accumulated Incidence) indicators is closely linked, in data terms, to a general relaxation in maintaining non-pharmacological preventive measures (such as masks, physical distance, ventilation and hand washing) despite the fact that they have amply demonstrated their efficacy. Therefore, the Ministry of Health insists on the need to maintain preventive measures to avoid risks of transmission of COVID-19.

Healthcare indicators

In the healthcare sector, the daily average of COVID-19 patients occupying conventional hospital beds, over the last week, increased by 34% compared to the previous week, with a daily average of 141 beds occupied, although the percentage of occupancy still remains at low or very low risk levels on each of the islands.

The number of ICU beds occupied has maintained a slightly upwards trend over the last two weeks, with a regional average, in the Autonomous Community as a whole, of 5.8% still maintaining low risk, on Gran Canaria and Tenerife, and on the rest of the islands, this percentage of occupation remains at very low risk.

The median age of all people hospitalised for COVID-19 over the last 14 days remains at 65.5 years old.

50% of those admitted to critical care units, diagnosed during the last 2 weeks, had not received the complete vaccination schedule and 62.8% of those admitted for COVID and diagnosed in the last 14 days had no previous pathologies, this percentage increases in unvaccinated patients in whom 77.8% had no other known pathologies.

Cumulative incidence in unvaccinated people

The accumulated incidence (AI) rate of COVID-19 cases in the last week is now 2.6 times higher among the population that has not received any doses of vaccine, compared to the rate in the population who have received the full regimen.

Tenerife and Gran Canaria

The report also details a growing evolution among community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in the Archipelago, with the exception of La Gomera and El Hierro. This increase is described as rapid, with a percentage variation between the 7dAI and the 14-day AI, on average higher than 58%.

At this time, pressure indicators in hospital environments do not appear to exceed the capacities of the system, but their evolution will have to be monitored in order to provide any sort of early and effective response. Therefore, although Gran Canaria and Tenerife present transmission indicators, in recent days, at high risk levels, this week these islands will maintain Alert Level 1 pending next week’s assessment of hospital pressure indicators, along with the new criteria to be applied as part of the Presentation of Alerts and Preparedness and Response Plans, approved by the Public Health Commission of the Inter-territorial Council of the National Health System on November 23, 2021.

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