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Madrid’s Hospitals Show Pandemic’s Stranglehold on Europe

  • Spanish capital region’s ICUs almost full, epidemiologist says
  • Health emergency seen back after harsh lockdown ended in June
Paramedics wheel a patient on a stretcher into the emergency department of a hospital in Madrid on March 30.
Paramedics wheel a patient on a stretcher into the emergency department of a hospital in Madrid on March 30.Photographer: Paul Hanna/Bloomberg
Updated on

Hospitals in Madrid are filling up with seriously ill Covid-19 patients again, raising the specter of a health-care collapse similar to the grim scenes southern Europe experienced last spring.

The number of intensive-care beds with coronavirus patients in the Spanish capital region jumped to 39% on Thursday from 25% at the end of last week, according to official data. But Miguel Hernan, a Harvard University epidemiology professor who has advised the Spanish government, said the way Spain counts capacity understates the strain and ICU beds in Madrid actually are almost full.