Brief report on COVID-19 and the current impact of the novel virus on health care system in the EMEA region SPAIN

Jonathan Galduf – PharmD, MSc, Market Access Manager. SUN Pharma. ISPOR Spanish Chapter,
Paloma González García – BPharm, MSc. Strategic Account and Market Access Lead, Hologic Inc. ISPOR Spanish Chapter,

Spain had on March 29th, 2020, 85,195 confirmed cases with 7,340 accumulated deaths*. The number of deaths in Spain (also in Italy) are skyrocketing more rapidly than they did in China. Up to date, diagnosis test is only indicated if a person has symptoms and has been in contact with a confirmed or probable case during the last 14 days. Spain has 4,400 ICU beds (3,500 public and 900 private) and typically the occupation index is around 75%. This could create a situation of over demand of ICU beds and, if the situation is out of control, the collapse of the whole NHS may be a fact. To relieve pressure on hospitals, Madrid and Catalonia turned conference centres and big hotels to treat mild to severe COVID19 cases. Many hospitals across the country are being fully transformed into COVID19 patient care centres and many UCI units are being created from existing facilities.
In order to control the incidence, on March 14th the Government declared the state of alarm, which regulates the limitation to the citizens´ movement and gives the Government “extraordinary powers” to guarantee “maximum coordination” to face the virus and protect the population. Initially, the state of alarm will be extended until 11th of April, with a complete lockdown from 30th of March to 9th of April. All health services, military, private and public, are now under the control of the Ministry of Health, in coordination with the regional health services. Additionally, a package to pump €214 billion into the economy, to address economic and social impact of coronavirus was announced, which represents almost 20% of GDP. Moreover, €30 million will be allocated to investigate a COVID19 vaccine, together with other preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic tools. The 3 pillars for the purchasing in health are: personal protective equipment; respirators and ventilators; and rapid diagnostic tests. Local health companies must produce essential medicines & devices to fight COVID19.

*Source: Ministry of Health, Spain.