Covid hospital total hits six-week high; 2 millionth vaccine shot given
After a 24-hour period in which hospitals took on more Covid-19 patients than they have in months, the number of patients in treatment with the coronavirus disease rose to its highest point since February 5. There were 2,041 patients with Covid-19 in care on Friday afternoon, a single-day increase of two percent.
The total was seven percent greater than a week ago, and put the Netherlands on pace to have nearly 2,200 patients in care by the end of next week. Friday's tally included 579 patients in intensive care, a net increase of 15, and 1,462 in regular care, 26 more than on Thursday.
Hospitals admitted 283 patients with Covid-19 between the afternoons of Thursday and Friday, the most in one day since January 18. According to the LCPS, 46 of those patients were placed in intensive care. On average over the past week, hospitals took on 247 patients per day, including 39 who were placed in the ICU.
Coronavirus infections surged a third just in March
Public health agency RIVM also confirmed on Friday that 7,425 more people tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infection, the most in a single day since January 8. That was 24 percent higher compared to Thursday, and 38 percent more than a week ago.
It pushed the seven-day average up to 6,066, the highest it has been in over two months. The average has gone up by about 32 percent just since the start of March.
The three cities with the most infections reported Friday, Amsterdam (381), Rotterdam (348) and The Hague (225), saw their highest single-day totals since December. The two latter cities have seen their seven-day averages go up by a third this week.
Covid-19 vaccine use hits two million
On the plus side, the Netherlands has administered its two-millionth Covid-19 vaccine dose, Health Minister Hugo de Jonge announced on Friday. it took the country about a month to raise that figure from one to two million.
"We expect the 3 millionth at the beginning of April," De Jonge stated. "The result of the hard work of an awful lot of people."
Over the past week, the Netherlands has been administering an average of about 32 thousand vaccine doses daily. That figure slipped about 14 percent after the country briefly suspended the use of the AstraZeneca vaccine over concerns it was tied to rare, severe cases of blood clotting.
The European Medicines Agency said on Thursday it was unable to link the vaccine, or a batch of the vaccine, to the 25 specific cases of blood clotting reported in the European Economic Area. The Netherlands will resume use of the vaccine next week.
The RIVM estimated that 2,008,275 vaccine doses have been administered to date, and at least 500 thousand of them were a person's second dose of a two-shot vaccine. Just shy of a quarter of a million shots were given over the past seven days.
To date, people have tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus 1,186,987 times in the Netherlands. Of that group, 16,244 people have been confirmed to have died from Covid-19, a figure which rose by 46 on Friday.