Outbreak team meeting on whether to relax more Covid rules
The Outbreak Management Team (OMT) is meeting today to discuss the current state of affairs around the coronavirus. The experts are gathering in the run-up to the next "weighing moment," as the Cabinet calls it. In his previous press conference, Minister Ernst Kuipers of Public Health said that the next weighing moment would be on March 15, so Tuesday.
According to insiders, the Cabinet wants to scrap most remaining measures on March 23. The most drastic measures that will remain in place are mandatory face masks in public transport and getting tested before attending a major indoor event. Face masks in aircraft are also expected to stay mandatory because that was agreed in a European context.
The OMT's agenda is never announced in advance. The team of experts advises the Cabinet on virus control. When he took office as Public Health Minister, Kuipers started publishing the OMT advice before the Cabinet decided on coronavirus measures. The previous Cabinet invariably published its decisions first and only then the advice they were based on.
Since the Cabinet scrapped most coronavirus measures last month, the number of Covid-19 infections has risen sharply. Carnival likely played a role in this. The number of hospitalized coronavirus patients also increased, but hospitals are still far from the critical levels seen earlier in the pandemic. According to the most recent figures from the National Coordination Center for Patient Distribution (CLPS), a total of 1,658 people with the coronavirus are in the hospital. LCPS also includes people admitted for other reasons who tested positive while in the hospital.
The government is expected to continue recommending basic measures - stay at home and get tested if you have symptoms, keep your distance from others where possible, wash your hands regularly, and keep indoor spaces well ventilated,
Reporting by ANP