Nearly 100 more coronavirus patients dead, 529 more hospitalized
Another 93 people reportedly died after testing positive for coronavirus, public health agency RIVM said on Monday, bringing the country's total number of fatal cases to 864. More patients were also admitted to intensive care units through the course of the day, with the total number of known infections in the Netherlands rising to 11,750, an increase of 884 since Sunday.
The updated statistics were released moments after several reports were published stating that the Dutch government's measures to combat the spread of coronavirus and "flatten the curve" will be extended beyond April 6. On Sunday night, a data scientist from the RIVM said that the measures in place across the country were working, but not as well as they expected.
"This week it will become clear whether there is a real flattening," the RIVM said in a statement. In Noord-Brabant, where measures were people were told to stay indoors as much as possible before the rest of the country, the number of hospital admissions has continued to fall. At the same time, the reate is increasing more quickly in Gelderland, Limburg, Noord-Holland, and Zuid-Holland.
Some 529 more people were added to the total number of patients admitted to the hospital for treatment, the RIVM stated. In total, nearly four thousand patients who were diagnosed with coronavirus have required hospitalization since the end of February.
It includes 995 people currently being treated in intensive care units for Covid-19, according to NICE, the organization responsible for gathering the country's ICU data. Another 57 people are suspected of having the coronavirus disease, but they have not yet been fully diagnosed as such by 2:15 p.m. on Monday. In total the 1,052 people being treated for symptoms connected to Covid-19 rose by 26 since Monday morning.
The Netherlands normally maintains approximately 1,150 ICU beds, which is expected to scale up to 1,600 by April 1. However, RIVM infectious diseases data scientist Jacco Wallinga said the "most likely scenario" would see the Netherlands needing to treat 2,500 Covid-19 patients in intensive care within a few weeks.
UMC Groningen and the Aletta Jacobs School of Public Health launched a large study into the risk factors for the coronavirus in Groningen, Friesland and Drenthe. Over 135 thousand residents of these provinces, who in the past made hair, urine or blood available to bio-bank Lifelines, will be asked to fill out a weekly questionnaires. The researchers will look into the hereditary and environmental factors that may influence development of the coronavirus. Covid-19's influence on mental health will also be studied. The researchers hope that this knowledge will help to predict the course of other infectious diseases in the future.
Last week Diederik Gommers, president of intensive care association NVIC, said that 80 percent of the Covid-19 patients in intensive care are overweight. According to Liesbeth van Rossum, internist at Erasmus MC in Rotterdam, obesity is a risk factor for the coronavirus because it affects the immune system, but she strongly advises against crash diets to avoid infection. "A crash diet doesn't solve your obesity problem, " she said to NOS. Crash diets can result in a lack of nutrients, which may also affect your immune system, she said.
Streaming service Primephonic found that people like to listen to classical music during this crisis. In March, people in the Netherlands streamed classical music 10 percent more than the month before. In countries harder hit by the virus, the increase was even more significant. France, for example, saw a 40 percent increase and Spain a 20 percent increase, RTL Nieuws reports.
The annual Easter spectacle The Passion will still happen this year, but in a much adapted form. Broadcasters EO and KRO-NCRV announced that this year will be a virtual procession, with a live narration by Johnny de Mol and fragments from the past nine editions, without a live band and without an audience. Viewers can join the procession online. The Passion was supposed to take place in Roermond this year, but was canceled due to the coronavirus.