1,756 coronavirus infections today; More cases this week than all of July
For the third straight day, the Netherlands surpassed its highest total of new coronavirus infections reported in a single day. Early data from public health agency RIVM on Thursday showed that 1,756 people tested positive for the virus, a 13.5 percent increase over Wednesday, and more than double the single-day tally reported last Tuesday.
About 67 percent of the new infections were discovered in the Randstad region, with 298 in the Amsterdam-Amstelland area, and 257 in Rotterdam-Rijnmond. The RIVM said 183 infections were found among those living in the region around The Hague, and 180 residents of the Utrecht Security Region.
The government is widely expected to introduce a package of new measures to halt the spread of the virus in the regions around those cities, as well as the areas around Haarlem, Leiden, and possibly Utrecht. The announcement was expected at a 7 p.m. press conference with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Health Minister Hugo de Jonge set for Friday.
This week, 5,981 people have tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus, a 61-percent hike over the same period last week. This week alone has produced more positive results than during all of July, the second month where testing was made available to most members of the public. That month, 4,689 people were given a positive diagnosis for the viral infection.
Covid hospitalizations rise 7 percent
Hospitalizations for respiratory illness Covid-19 also rose by nearly seven percent on Thursday. Dutch hospitals were treating 261 people for the coronavirus disease, including 212 outside of intensive care, an increase of 21.
Intensive care units accounted for 49 patients, a decrease of five. "More and more COVID patients are entering hospitals," said Ernst Kuipers, the head of the Dutch acute care providers network. "More than 50% of them are located in the regions of Amsterdam and Rotterdam."
According to the RIVM, 54 people were hospitalized for Covid-19 from Monday through Wednesday. During that time, 12 people were also moved into intensive care.
The daily total of hospitalizations for Covid-19 has risen every day since September 2.