Health Minister won't rule out new coronavirus lockdown
Minister Hugo de Jonge of Public Health cannot rule out that lockdown-like measures will be necessary for the coming weeks, he said to BNR in response to the high number of coronavirus infections this weekend.
The Minister cannot say which measures the Cabinet will take. "What we do want to emphasize is that the measures do not have to be as strict if we adhere more closely to the advice that already applies. We do this by keeping our distance, wearing a face mask, getting tested in case of complaints, and not going out if you have complaints," De Jonge said.
The Cabinet's main priority is to protect healthcare. "We see that the figures are rising again. We see that surgeries have to be postponed again. We know that because of people who have not been vaccinated in particular, we still have a number of patients to expect in the hospitals. And if that number comes in too short a time, then healthcare will come under pressure again, and that is, of course, our concern."
When asked about extending the use of the coronavirus access pass, De Jonge said that the Cabinet is working on two legislative amendments to allow its use in retail and the workplace. "But that is still in the process of being worked out, so we haven't decided on that yet. We will only do that if the measure proves necessary at that time," he said to the broadcaster.