COVID-19 | Daily Update

May 17, 2020

Wednesday, May 17th | COVID-19 Daily Update



The Portuguese General Directorate of Health (DGS) announced today the highest number of recovered patients in just 24 hours that increased by 814 cases (+21.30%), with a total number of 4,636.

In its daily epidemiological bulletin published today, DGS registers 15 more deaths and 226 cases of infection with COVID-19 in Portugal in the last 24 hours.

The number of deaths rose from 1,203 to 1,218 (+1.25%) and the total number of confirmed cases increased from 28,810 to 29,036 (+0.79%).



The Minister of Health guarantees that all nurseries to reopen tomorrow will have completed the tests for their professionals. DGS General Director, Graça Freitas, considers that national paediatrics is prepared for a possible increase in cases of COVID-19 in children.

DGS purchased three million FFP2 face masks with an invalid or fake certificate from Quilaban, a company owned by the former president of the National Pharmacy Association.

Quarantine is no longer mandatory in the Azores and the regional government adopts alternative measures.

The northern region of the country remains the most affected by the pandemic. However, the evolution of new cases has shown a trend of greater contagion in the region of Lisbon and the Tagus Valley, which added more cases in the last week and was the second with more deaths.



The new coronavirus has killed at least 309,296 people worldwide since it was detected, according to AFP (French news agency). More than 4,588,360 cases of infection have been officially diagnosed in 196 countries and territories since the pandemic began.

The lifting of restrictions, imposed by almost all governments to stop the COVID-19 pandemic, will continue the reopening of various services in many European countries tomorrow. 

Spain recorded an additional 87 deaths in the last 24 hours. The Spanish Prime Minister has announced that he will prolong the state of emergency in the country for “about a month” so that it will be active until the end of the last stage of the deconfinement.

In Germany, there is a further drop in the daily numbers of cases and deaths, with 583 new cases and 33 fatalities detected. 

The USA recorded 1,237 deaths in the last 24 hours, which brought the total number of deaths to 88,730. Almost 24 thousand cases were identified, increasing the number of contagions to 1,466,682.  

Brazil has a total of 15,633 deaths and 233,142 people diagnosed with the disease, having recorded 816 deaths and 14,919 new ones from yesterday. 

For the third consecutive day, Mexico passed the barrier of two thousand new cases of contagion, adding another 278 deaths. 

The death toll of COVID-19 in Africa has soared to 2,704 today, with more than 81,000 infected in 54 countries. 

India is experiencing an exponential increase in the number of positive cases. In the last 24 hours, 4,987 new cases were diagnosed.

China has five cases of infection with the new coronavirus, at the time when the city of Shanghai announced the restart of some classes and the airlines resumed flights. 

Zhong Nanshan, a consultant to the Chinese government and a leading figure in the fight against the pandemic, assumes that the country is vulnerable to a second wave.

Spraying the streets with disinfectant, as some countries are doing to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, does not eliminate the virus and poses health risks, warned the World Health Organization (WHO).

Donald Trump said yesterday that he is considering partially resuming the U.S. contribution to WHO, which he suspended in April.



To help better understand the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, Visual Science studios have created a new 3D model of this virus in great detail, scientifically correct and with a high resolution.

Researchers and scientists are increasingly believing that the new coronavirus will not disappear and could turn into an endemic virus, like flu, and generate outbreaks cyclically.

A group of researchers from the Gulbenkian Institute of Science wants to identify the genetic susceptibilities that the virus presents from person to person. 

Portugal should consider the results of several scientific studies carried out in the United Kingdom that point to the added vulnerability to COVID-19 of people with an African genetic background, argues a Portuguese researcher working in London.

More than a million people were found to have recovered from COVID-19, but researchers are studying data from past epidemics caused by similar viruses, which show that the sequelae can last for more than a decade.



The Portuguese Prime Minister, António Costa, walked through the stores of Chiado, in Lisbon, and asked the Portuguese to return to the streets, albeit with caution due to COVID-19. 

The pandemic brought up the world of remote work and also some problems with it. For this reason, the Agency for Administrative Modernization has created a course for remote work.

The Minister of Agriculture announced that she will discuss with the European Commission the transfer of 85 million euros to apply in this year’s agricultural campaign. CAP (Portuguese Farmers Confederation) considered the advance of this payment to be “insufficient”.

Increased food waste is one of the visible faces of the pandemic. Across the world, tons of fruit, vegetables, and thousands of eggs or litres of milk are being thrown away due to difficulties in product sell-out.

More than 15,000 families, 2,000 small businesses and around 300 companies have resorted to the flexible light payment plans launched by EDP Comercial (electricity), within the scope of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The president of the Vila Galé hotels group argues that the simplified lay-off should extend beyond the 1st of June for those who start work. Jorge Rebelo de Almeida also considers that this is the “ideal time to rethink” the construction of the new airport in Montijo.

The coronavirus threatens to transform the line that divides Europe between the richest north and the poorest south into an economic abyss, putting the region’s currency at risk. 

The cost of the pandemic is so high that only printing money can pay for it. Forced to spend record amounts, policymakers are removing the barriers between borrowing the money they need and simply creating it.  

According to the Asian Development Bank, the cost of the COVID-19 pandemic could reach $ 8.8 billion, or almost 10% of global GDP, depending on the evolution of the outbreak and the extent of government responses.



Wall Street managed to finish the last session of the week on positive ground, mainly animated by the retail stock.

Even so, the American stock exchanges had losses in the accumulated of the week, mainly for the industrial index, which added up a weekly loss of 2.6%. 

The Dow Jones and S&P 500 registered a loss of more than 2% this week, influenced by the economic data that was being revealed.