Spain, on March 22 ramped up its battle against the COVID-19 pandemic, mobilising 52,000 additional health workers and racing to finish the construction of its field hospitals, international media reported. Spain, which has the second-highest number of infections in Europe, reported cases 25,496 of infection and 1,381 deaths. Amidst crisis, the country's prime minister addressed citizens warning them of the upcoming dangers as the infection worsened.
Speaking in a televised address to the Spanish people, country's Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said, "We must prepare ourselves emotionally and psychologically for very hard days ahead.” According to the Spanish health ministry, the capital city of Madrid remained the hit hardest hit by the virus. Talking to international media, Maria Jose Sierra, the ministry's spokesperson said that the cases in the country were rising and were expected to rise further in the coming days. Stating statistics, she further said that nearly 70 per cent of patients placed in intensive care units were more than 60 years old whereas 2 per cent out of them were below 20 years. She also reportedly said that all those who had died were mainly people over 70 and particularly the over-80s.
According to international media, authorities have called up 52,000 extra workers, including 14,000 retired doctors and nurses to help the country's medical services battle the virus. Spain has also issued lockdown orders for some 46 million people who are only permitted to leave their homes for essential work, food shopping, medical reasons or to walk the dog. In addition to the aforementioned, around 2,800 soldiers have been mobilised to disinfect train stations and airports and to bring help to elderly, vulnerable people, international media reported citing General Miguel Villarroya, chief of the defence staff. Meanwhile, officials have distributed hundreds of thousands of surgical masks, adapted hotels to treat the sick and produced hundreds of thousands of test kits.