Drop in weekly coronavirus cases less sharp than previous weeks; Hospitalizations down 27%
The number of new coronavirus cases is continuing to fall, but the decrease is now considerably slower than in previous weeks. Some 18,048 people have tested positive in the past seven days. That is 14 percent fewer than a week ago.
At that time, the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) reported that it had received 21,005 reports of positive tests in seven days. The current coronavirus wave peaked in mid-July. In a week there were almost 70,000 positive tests. A week later, that had almost halved to over 37,000. Last week, it almost halved again, to 21,005.
The total is now leveling off a bit. "The number of reports decreased or remained the same in all age groups and in almost all regions," the RIVM concludes. “Compared to a week earlier, the number of positive tests per 100,000 inhabitants decreased from 121 to 103.”
Eighteen percent of those diagnosed with the infection last week had traveled to the Netherlands within 14 days of the positive test result. There were ten destinations in total where over 100 infected people had visited. Those were Greece (602), Spain (500), France (449), Croatia (258), Italy (246), Germany (205), Belgium (191), Turkey (180), Morocco (150), Bulgaria (115).
The basic reproduction (R) number showed a slight increase at 0.79. That means that an average group of one hundred people with coronavirus infects 79 others, who in turn transmit the virus to 62 people, who then infect 49 people. With each step the group of new cases gets smaller, but an increase like this indicates that the decrease is less rapid. The figure, which indicates how quickly the coronavirus is spreading, stood at 0.69 last Tuesday and 0.72 last Friday.
Swift decline in Covid-19 hospitalizations
The number of coronavirus patients who end up in a regular nursing ward or an intensive care unit is falling rapidly. Last week, 421 people were admitted to a hospital because of their coronavirus complaints, more than a quarter less than the 573 new admissions from the week before.
Out of the 421 patients this week, 115 people ended up in intensive care, which is 17 fewer patients than the previous week.
The number of deaths caused by Covid-19 continues to rise. In the past week, the RIVM registered that 46 people have died from the virus, compared to 28 in the week before and 21 a week earlier. That was not unexpected. If the number of positive tests rises, the number of hospitalizations often follow one to two weeks later, and the number of deaths then follow shortly after that.
Subsequently, when the number of new coronavirus infections decreases, the number of hospital admissions will decrease, and ultimately also the number of deaths.
People have tested positive for the coronavirus infection 1,889,992 times since the pandemic started. The RIVM has learned of 17,878 deaths from Covid-19, though Statistics Netherlands (CBS) was informed of at least 12 thousand more. Death reports must be filed with the CBS; there is no such obligation for the RIVM.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times