ICU leader: Rutte “can’t deliver” on promises; Reopening not possible until over-60s vaccinated
Relaxing the lockdown measures should only be possible once everyone older than 60 has received a Covid-19 vaccine, Dutch Association for Intensive Care chair Diederik Gommers said on the talk show Op1. He also argued that Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s five-step plan to get out of lockdown beginning in two weeks is unrealistic.
”What Mark Rutte promises, he can’t deliver”, Gommers said.
A new plan that is meant to take the Netherlands out of lockdown in 5 steps is supposed to begin on April 28, and end by early July when every adult is expected to have had access to a vaccine shot. The gradual relaxation of the measures is to start with the reopening of cafe terraces and more shops, and the elimination of the curfew.
But Gommers said that the fall in the number of infections is unlikely to happen before May. “Then why does he say, 'We're going to check again at the end of next week? In that case, a miracle must happen.” he argued.
An announcement will take place on April 20 to inform the public if the country will move forward with step one on April 28, which Rutte and Health Minister Hugo de Jonge said would depend on the rise or fall in coronavirus infections, and the number of Covid-19 hospitalizations. Hospital admissions over the past week have been at a three-month high, data from patient coordination office LCPS showed.
Diederik Gommers: ‘’Alle zestigplussers moeten gevaccineerd zijn, pas dan kunnen we versoepelen. We kunnen niet ineens een week later wel versoepelen, wat Mark Rutte nu wel zegt.’’ #Op1 pic.twitter.com/OwLKssgUpa— Op1 (@op1npo) April 13, 2021
According to the plan announced on Tuesday, the remaining four phases of the gradual reopening should take place on May 11, May 25, June 25 and July 7. De Jonge said that in an optimistic scenario, the basic coronavirus measures of frequent hand washing, social distancing, and staying home when symptoms arise could be abandoned in August this year.