Spains Ministry of Health reported 683 deaths, bringing the total to 15,238. The number of new cases rose by 5,756 to 152,446.
The official mortality rate calculated from those two figures is one of the highest in the world, though the true rate is lower. Health experts around the world have found evidence that a significant percentage of people infected with the virus show few or no symptoms. If all of those patients were confirmed, the death rate would drop.
Death rates in most other countries are far lower than Spains, reaching below 1 percent in some areas.
Spanish authorities have said the country reached appeared to reach its peak days ago and hospitals in some of the hardest hit areas have seen a drop in new patients, bringing the healthcare system in Madrid and nearby areas back from the brink. Madrid saw a drop in those hospitalized and in intensive care units (ICUs) overnight, while Catalonia, the second most-affected region, saw slight upticks.
Overall, total hospitalizations rose by 3,363 and ICU admissions ticked up 239 to 7,371. The region with the largest increase was Valencian Community, where hospitalizations about doubled.
The number of “cured,” or hospital discharges, also jumped by over 4,000. More than 52,000 Spaniards have been discharged from hospitals during the pandemic.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez told lawmakers in parliament in Madrid that the latest data showed Spain was close to the start of a decline in the COVID-19 epidemic. The new disease is caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, commonly known as novel coronavirus.
Referring to the virus as a fire, Sanchez said it has begun “to come under control.”
But lawmakers were poised to approve a two-week extension to the state of emergency declared last month. Lockdown orders would be extended to April 26.
“We are starting to see the end of this long road to the new normal,” he said, while warning that normality could not be complete until a vaccine was found against the CCP virus.
Spain has implemented strict social distancing measures, keeping large portions of the populace at home except for essential trips.
Sanchez asked lawmakers from all sides in the politically-fractured nation to join an economic revival pact as they did after dictator Francisco Francos death in the 1970s.
The plan seeks to unite political parties, unions, companies, and regions behind a common economic reconstruction policy and state welfare funding as Spain, like other western nations, piles billions of euros into aid and stimulus.
“I propose a great pact for the economic and social reconstruction of Spain, for all the political forces who want to lend their shoulder to take part,” said Sanchez, a socialist who leads a leftist coalition government after a series of inconclusive elections.