NL could be heading for third Covid wave, ICU doctor says
The increasing number of coronavirus infections could be indicating that the Netherlands is heading for a third wave, Diederik Gommers, intensive care doctor and head of ICU association NVIC said on talk show Beau on Tuesday.
Gommers could not say exactly why the number of infections is increasing, despite the country being in a partial lockdown since mid-October. "We can't find out exactly." But he did say that it is very worrying that the occupancy rate in hospitals is rising again and that the number of weekly infections also increased.
On Tuesday, public health institute RIVM reported that it recorded 43 thousand positive coronavirus tests last week, compared to 34 thousand the week before.
When the Outbreak Management Team last met last week, the forecasts were that the number of infections would decrease, Gommers said. "The calculations were based on that at the time," he said. What the rising numbers will mean for measures, remains to be seen, he said.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte warned in a press conference on Tuesday that the government may need to implement even stricter measures before Christmas if infection figures continue to rise. Christmas celebrations are already limited to no more than three guests at home.
"We are now at a crossroads. Either we together ensure that the figures go in the right direction, or the figures continue to rise. Then I will not rule out that we have to enforce even stricter measures before Christmas," Rutte said. "Of course nobody wants that. Let us make the best possible use of the Christmas period to comply with the measures."