Dutch coronavirus risk level completely orange on EU map as Friesland improves
Update 1:50 p.m. - Story updated after the ECDC updated its map and dataset
Friesland was the twelfth and last province to drop from red to orange on the map of coronavirus cases in Europe. The number of positive tests decreased enough for the warning color to be lowered. The whole of the Netherlands is now the second lowest warning color.
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) publishes the update every Thursday. The organization analyzes per capita infections by province and the percentage of positive tests nationally during the previous two calendar weeks. The map uses four colors to indicate risk levels. These are green, orange, red, and dark red, in order from lowest to highest risk.
In Friesland, 1,032 residents tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus during the past two weeks. That equates to 159 new cases for every 100,000 Frisians. Compared to last week's data, the number of positive tests fell by 23 percent, the most significant decrease in the entire country.
Limburg passed Friesland to become the largest source of new infections per capita. The southeastern province reported 1,955 positive tests, which is 175 per 100,000 residents. That is 10 percent more than on the previous map. The number of positive tests is also increasing in Gelderland and Zeeland.
Any region with 200 infections per capita over a two-week period will become red on the ECDC map regardless of the positivity rate. However, if the national positivity rate rises to at least 4 percent, any region with 75 to 499 per capita infections will turn red.
Groningen, Drenthe, and Noord-Brabant still have just too many positive tests to drop from orange to green, the lowest level. No Dutch provinces have been green since the beginning of July, as the Delta variant spread rapidly during the fourth wave of infections.Developments about the national rate of infection could also determine if the three provinces achieve that color. The number of positive tests across the country has increased five percent in a week, driven by data obtained the last few days. This should not affect the ECDC map this week, but it could impact next week's map.
In the rest of Europe, the picture remains the same as last week. The situation is improving in France, Spain and Italy, while the number of positive tests continues to rise in Central Europe. The Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region (with cities such as Marseille, Cannes and Nice) is no longer in the red, the last region in France to drop to a lower warning color. The whole country is now green and orange. In Spain, Valencia, among others, dropped from orange to green. The Greek holiday island of Crete turned orange for the first time since the beginning of July.
Slovenia remains completely dark red and Slovakia has now turned completely red. Large parts of Germany and Austria are also red. The alert level is also increasing in Romania, Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
Reporting by ANP