Netherlands on the verge of turning orange on EU Covid map
The Netherlands could make great progress on the map of coronavirus cases in Europe on Thursday. The country has been completely on red, the second-highest warning color, for weeks. But nine provinces may go a step down to orange if the positivity rate was below 4 percent for the last two weeks of tests.
The number of positive tests in the Netherlands clearly decreased in the last two weeks, and so has the percentage of positive tests. About 4 percent of all tests conducted in the past two weeks revealed a coronavirus infection. In July, the peak of the fourth wave, one in ten tests was positive.
At least Friesland, Zuid-Holland and Flevoland will remain on red on Thursday. They have too many positive tests. In Friesland, the coronavirus was diagnosed in more than 1,700 people in the past two weeks, which amounts to about 267 out of every 100,000 inhabitants. The other nine provinces could turn orange, if less than 4 percent of tests were positive. That includes tests for access, tests for travel, and tests performed by health service GGD.
The number of positive tests is falling fastest in Drenthe, Overijssel and Noord-Holland. About 20 percent fewer cases were identified there than with last week's map. Noord-Brabant and Zeeland have relatively the fewest positive tests. For every 100,000 residents, about 120 people were told that they were infected.
The ECDC, the European counterpart of the national institute for public health and the environment RIVM, publishes the coronavirus map every Thursday. The service looks at the number of confirmed infections and the percentage of positive tests in the two previous calendar weeks. The map has four colors. From low to high, these are green, orange, red and dark red. When the Netherlands turned dark red in July, this prompted countries like Germany and France to introduce stricter rules for Dutch people who wanted to cross the border.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times.