Weekly coronavirus infections shot up 27 percent; Hospitalizations rising again
Last week, 43,103 people in the Netherlands tested positive for an infection of the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus, over nine thousand more than during the previous week. The data, released by public health agency RIVM, includes new cases up through 10 a.m. on Tuesday, a total which was 27 percent higher than the week before.
There was not just a weekly increase in positive test results, but also for the first time in several weeks, the rate of infection was on the rise. About 11.6 percent of those who were tested for the virus were given a positive result. That was up from 11.1 percent.
The news suggested that the Cabinet would be even less likely to announce a loosening of coronavirus restrictions in the Netherlands when Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Health Minister Hugo de Jonge address the nation during a Tuesday evening press conference. The RIVM noted that there was an increase in the number of infections per capita in each of the 25 security regions, and that while the increase was most visible among those in their teens and early twenties, all age groups demonstrated a worsening situation.
Impressively, the number of tests carried out spiked up by 25 percent to over 339 thousand. Results of about 19 thousand samples were still being processed as of Tuesday morning. The RIVM said that there was still capacity to test even more people, with results delivered on average 34 hours from the time a person first calls to schedule the appointment.
Officially, the data stretches back to December 1, the first date where people who received a notification via the CoronaMelder app could get tested for the infection even if they were asymptomatic. Those in a household with someone who tested positive could also schedule their own test after five days even if they had no visible health symptoms. Combined, the groups accounted for 18,700 of those tested.
Some 1,229 people with the viral infection were admitted into the regular care departments at Dutch hospitals, a 22 percent increase. During that time period, 179 patients were moved into an intensive care unit, roughly flat compared to a week earlier.
The agency said it learned of 338 deaths from Covid-19 during that time, down from 406.
An estimated 87 thousand people were contagious with the virus in the Netherlands, the RIVM said. The basic reproduction (R) number of the virus held at about 1.00, meaning each contagious person was likely to infect one other person.
To date, 570,437 people in the Netherlands have tested positive for the virus, 26,200 have been treated in regular hospital departments, and 5,726 have needed the services of an intensive care unit.
At least 9,775 people have died from Covid-19.