Stricter measures needed to contain coronavirus; Calls for gov't press conference as infections rise
With the number of coronavirus cases in the Netherlands climbing more and more, stricter measures and harsher enforcement are needed to contain the virus, according to Sjaak de Gouw of health service GGD. "That combination would be good, but that is difficult," he said to NOS. The SGP thinks it is time for the Prime Minister and Public Health Minister to hold another press conference and remind everyone of the danger.
On Tuesday the RIVM reported that the number of Covid-19 infections doubled in one week, from 534 to 987. The percentage of positive tests increased by two thirds.
According to De Gouw, stricter measures and increased enforcement would be a good combination in the fight against a second coronavirus wave. "But that is difficult," he said to the broadcaster. "Enforcers and police officers are also on vacation, they have the right to it, and they are already being deployed extra." He called it "especially worrying" that Netherlands residents are no longer taking the coronavirus rules very seriously. "But you cannot put an enforcer everywhere. It is people's own responsibility, because that is what our policy is based on."
SGP parliamentarian Chris Stoffer called on Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Public Health Minister Hugo de Jonge to hold another press conference and increase the "sense of urgency" in adhering to the coronavirus measures. The Ministry of Health calls on people to be extra alert, pay more attention to staying 1.5 meters apart, and to avoid crowds. But the SGP thinks that message would be better distributed via press conference.
It's time for a wake-up call, Stoffer said to NOS. The last press conference was held before the holidays, when coronavirus numbers were improving. Now everyone, especially young people, should be reminded to be responsible, he said. "Think about your grandpas and grandmas."