Lagging Dutch Covid vaccine figures suddenly revised up by 19%
In a significant revision to Covid-19 vaccination figures, Dutch public health agency RIVM said that the country managed to administer 19 percent more vaccine doses over the past three months than previously estimated. It effectively added hundreds of thousands of jabs to the Dutch vaccination total. The new RIVM model also estimated that another 116,552 jabs were administered on Monday, pushing the total to over 3.9 million.
The revision was issued less than an hour after a press conference with Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Health Minister Hugo de Jonge wrapped up. During that event, De Jonge touted the 3.9 million figure, even as data submitted by the Health Ministry to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) was lower by about 700 thousand.
The RIVM claimed that the data discrepancy was due to a larger number of vaccinations given by general practitioners and at hospitals or care facilities. The RIVM also changed its model to retroactively account for a one percent rate of spillage, instead of assuming five percent of vaccine doses are wasted as it had expected.
The revised estimate said that the country administered 3,783,912 through Sunday. Nearly three million of these were a person's first injection, and over 800 thousand were a second dose.
If accurate, that would mean that 20.5 percent of the adult population has been at least partially vaccinated, and about six percent were fully inoculated against Covid-19. The first figure was far higher than the data most recently submitted to the ECDC, and the fully-vaccinated total was slightly lower.
It would put the Netherlands near the top of European standings for uptake of the first dose, and near the bottom for those fully vaccinated.
The correction effectively added 601 thousand to last week's vaccination tally, which rose to 919,926 as a result. It was not clear how much of this occurred last week, or at an earlier date. That total far surpassed an initial projection of 630 thousand, and an updated figure of about 430 thousand. During the press conference, De Jonge said the real figure was close to 630 thousand.
Earlier on Tuesday, a RIVM spokesperson told NL Times that the agency was struggling to keep up with the amount of vaccination data it was receiving. She also confirmed the RIVM was changing its model to estimate the number of vaccine doses given.
It was the second major alteration to the official figures since the Dutch vaccination campaign began on January 6. The RIVM has not provided complete raw data on the vaccine program since its start.