Portugal spends EUR915.9 mln on fighting against pandemic

Monday, 2021-03-01 12:29:56
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Members of the Republican National Guard wait to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Lisbon, Portugal, on Feb. 13, 2021. (Photo: Xinhua)
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The Portuguese government announced on Sunday that it had spent EUR915.9 million (US$1.11 billion) on fighting against the coronavirus pandemic.

Official data showed that the expenditure on the country's health system increased by 11.3 percent in January 2021 compared to the same period last year, with most of it being paid for professionals and medical equipment.

The Ministry of Health has reported having contracted 981 hospital beds by the end of January this year, with 745 beds from the private and social sectors and 236 from the Armed Forces.

The number of ventilators for the treatment of COVID-19 patients has almost doubled, now totaling 2,216 pieces of equipment available through the health system.

Beds in intensive care units more than tripled, rising from 431 beds in January 2020 to 1,411 on Feb. 10 this year.

According to the latest data from the Directorate-General for Health, Portugal currently has 861,922 people vaccinated against the coronavirus: 596,812 with the first dose and 265,110 with the second dose.

Portugal's confirmed COVID-19 cases stood now at 804,562.

As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in some countries with the already-authorized coronavirus vaccines.

Meanwhile, 255 candidate vaccines are still being developed worldwide -- 73 of them in clinical trials -- in countries including Germany, China, Russia, Britain, and the United States, according to information released by the World Health Organization on Feb. 23.