Netherlands' Covid-19 vaccination rate stalling
The Covid-19 vaccination rate in the Netherlands is stalling. Many other EU countries have passed the Netherlands when it comes to the vaccination rate, AD reports based on figures from Our World in Data, which keeps track of the vaccination figures world wide. "The first thing that strikes you is that the Netherlands is currently the country that uses the fewest vaccinations of all EU countries," Edouard Mattieu of Our World in Data said.
In France, for example, the number of vaccinated people is currently still risking by 0.5 to 1 percent per day. In the Netherlands that increase is only 0.05 percent. "That is the lowest in the entire European Union. In other countries you see that progress is being made, but the Netherlands is stalling," Mattieu said. On August 1, 68.3 percent of Netherlands residents had at least one Covid-19 jab. By August 29, that increased only to 69.2 percent.
Public health institute RIVM acknowledged to AD that there is "a leveling off" in the vaccination figures. "We are still giving first shots, but not very much anymore," a spokesperson said to the newspaper. "In the coming weeks, 70,000 to 80,000 appointments for first injections are scheduled per week, which was previously more than a million."
According to AD, countries like France, Greece and Portugal saw their vaccination rate increase rapidly after they announced that people will have to show a vaccination certificate or negative test before going to restaurants or museums or the like. The Netherlands chose a different strategy, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Public Health said to the newspaper. "We say there will be no compulsory vaccination, but we try to inform people as well as possible and offer low-threshold testing. That might be a little slower."
The Ministry thinks the vaccination rate may increase a bit after September 20 - the date on which the cabinet plans to abandon social distancing, in exchange for more access testing. A narrow majority in parliament also thinks people should contribute to the costs of access tests from that day.