FACE-TO-FACE appointments are being increased in Costa Blanca and Valencia medical centres and hospitals as COVID-19 cases continue to fall.

Routine operations will be restored and restrictions eased to allow more people to visit a patient in hospital.

The Valencian Community has the lowest infection rate in Spain prompting the regional health ministry to instruct health departments to resume personal consultations and relax hospital measures that were introduced when infection rates rocketed in January.

Patients with COVID-19 now account for just 3.21% of hospital beds according to the latest figures, while 13.9% of ICU beds have people being treated for the coronavirus.

The Valencian health ministry says that ‘face-to-face’ activity is now being encouraged in medical centres and hospitals, but some consultations may still take place remotely via the phone or internet link to avoid the ‘unnecessary’ movement of patients.

Up to two people will be allowed to go to visit a hospital patient, but with only one of them in the room at a time.

Visits to ICU patients will be limited to one person for up to 30 minutes each during the morning and the afternoon.

Terminally-ill patients will be able to receive up to three visitors at one time.

One person will be able to accompany a pregnant patient at all times, and registered volunteers will be allowed to resume their support work for patients and their families.

Pre-natal and post-natal classes will resume at up to 30% of normal capacity and other health groups and classes will resume, also at up to 30% of capacity.

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