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COVID-19 daily deaths hit new record in Portugal

20 Jan 2021, 03:05 GMT+10

LISBON, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Portugal recorded on Tuesday the COVID-19-related death of another 218 people, which set a new daily record.

On Monday, 167 deaths were reported. The virus has killed 9,246 people in the country since the beginning of the pandemic, the Directorate-General for Health (DGS) said.

In January alone, COVID-19 has already caused 2,274 deaths, a total that took seven months to reach during the first wave of the pandemic.

In addition, 10,455 new cases of infection were registered, bringing the cumulative total of infected individuals to 566,958.

The DGS epidemiological bulletin also reveals that 5,291 people are hospitalized, including 670 in intensive care units -- the highest numbers since the beginning of the pandemic.

The total number of recoveries in the country stood at 10,282.

Also on Tuesday, Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa signed a government decree amending the rules of the state of emergency that remains in force in Portugal until Jan. 30.

As of Jan. 20, the new rules include a general confinement, the prohibition of movement between municipalities, and regular checks on compliance with the telework order.

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa said Tuesday that the country's schools will remain open. Students will have access to rapid COVID-19 test and the health security measures will be enforced.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), face masks should be used as part of a comprehensive strategy of measures to suppress COVID-19 transmission and save lives.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreaks in early 2020, wearing masks in public has been widely accepted in Asian countries like China, South Korea, Japan, and Vietnam to curb the spread of the virus.

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