Spain's COVID-19 death toll climbs by 368, new daily high in second wave

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Hospital staff treat patients suffering from coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Hospital del Mar

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain added 368 fatalities to its coronavirus death toll in the sharpest daily increase for the pandemic's second wave, Health Ministry data showed on Thursday.

The rise to a total of 38,486 deaths comes a day after the government introduced a new methodology for logging cases and deaths, frustrating direct comparisons with previous days.

Infections climbed by 21,908 to 1,306,316, the data showed.

Under the Spanish system, there is often a delay of several days before a death or infection is logged in the official statistics, meaning only 88 of the fatalities included in Thursday's tally happened in the past 24 hours. The bulk took place days or even weeks before.

The highest number of single-day deaths so far in the second wave was recorded on Oct. 27, when 188 people died of the coronavirus, and it remains far below the early April record of around 900.

(Reporting by Nathan Allen, editing by Andrei Khalip and Bernadette Baum)

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