The Red Cross is calling on people in the Netherlands to reach out to vulnerable people around them. According to the aid organization, many people are afraid and need someone to talk to. Meanwhile, the University Medical Center in Groningen (UMCG) is opening an outpatient clinic specifically for patients who may have the coronavirus Covid-19.
Dutch rail company NS is significantly reducing the number of trains running from Saturday, due to the coronavirus. From every station in the Netherlands, only two trains an hour will run in all directions, according to the new basic timetable. There will also be no night trains in the coming period, NU.nl reports.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte is keeping the possibility open to temporarily halt public life in the Netherlands completely in the fight against the coronavirus. But, as the country's care capacity is still sufficient, such a lock down is not yet necessary, he said to NOS in response to criticism on the Dutch policy to strive for "herd immunity" against Covid-19.
The Dutch Royal Family were among thousands in standing on their balconies, at their windows, and on the streets to show their support for the country's healthcare workers and first responders. The initiative was organized on social media, inspired by people paying homage to their aid workers in Italy and Spain.
The Dutch government issued a far-reaching cautionary statement on Tuesday telling the country's residents to avoid traveling outside the Netherlands at all costs. The warning, released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was because of the rapid speed with which new restrictions were being introduced by the national government and governments abroad.
"Holiday trips abroad are not recommended," the Ministry continued. "If you have travel plans, consider whether this trip is really necessary. Postpone or cancel the trip whenever possible."
In order to prevent medicine shortages and hoarding, the Ministry of Public Health agreed with pharmacies, drugstores and wholesalers to limit the amount of medicines sold per customer, medicines authority CBG said.
Prescription medicine will henceforth be sold as per the prescription, but customers will not be able to take medicines for long in advance. Over-the-counter medicine like paracetamol will be limited to three packs per customer, according to the CBG recommendation.
Telecom providers KPN and VodafoneZiggo have decided to give their customers free access to television channels that are usually sold for an additional fee. Both companies are also implementing plans to help people working from home, including some services available free of charge even for customers of other telecom providers.
About 50 to 60 percent of the population of the Netherlands need to be infected by and recovered from Covid-19 for the country to achieve herd immunity against the coronavirus, Jaap van Dissel, head of public health institute RIVM said to Nieuwsuur.
Another 19 people who tested positive for coronavirus died in the Netherlands since Monday, Dutch public health agency RIVM announced. It brings the total number of fatalities in the coronavirus crisis to 43.
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment received over 48 thousand applications for working time reduction. The spike in applications means that their processing will take longer than usual, and is also resulting in the Ministry's website crashing every now and again, the Ministry said on Tuesday.
Broadcaster NPO is launching an educational live show to keep kids entertained and learning during their Covid-19 imposed social isolation. The daily educational talk show will Zapplive Extra start broadcasting on NPO app and NPO Start on Wednesday, NOS reports.
The show will feature experts who can answer children's questions about the coronavirus and other things. Children can ask their questions and start a conversation, NPO said. "Of course there is also room for relaxation and tips given on how to best get through the days at home."
Some 7 million people watched Prime Minister Mark Rutte address the nation on television on Monday evening. Rutte discussed the situation around the Covid-19 outbreak. He said that a large proportion of the Dutch population would likely be infected with the virus, discussed the measures that were being taken and why, and call on Netherlands residents to get through this difficult time together.
Inspired by videos of people in Italy and Spain applauding their local healthcare workers, an event was created on Facebook calling on people in the Netherlands to do the same. The nationwide standing ovation will happen at 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, according to the Facebook event.
A total of 96 people in the Netherlands are in intensive care units with coronavirus Covid-19, the Dutch association for Intensive Care reported on Monday evening. Hospitals are increasingly concerned about a shortage of medical masks to protect healthcare workers and their patients.
Amsterdam residents on Egelantiersgracht in Jordaan decided to break the monotony of social isolation with a singalong. A video shows them singing together through their windows.
The song they're singing is called Aan de Amsterdamse grachten, which translates to 'On the Amsterdam Canals'.
After ordering restaurants and other catering businesses, including coffeeshops, closed until at east April 6 on Sunday, the government announced on Monday that these establishments can reopen, but only for takeaways and deliveries.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte addressed the nation on Monday evening regarding the state of affairs around coronavirus Covid-19. He said that the reality is that the coronavirus is among us, and will remain among us for the time being. Below find the full text of his speech, translated from Dutch by NL Times.
In the country's first national address by a prime minister in over 40 years, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte laid out three possible scenarios that affect how the coronavirus pandemic will impact the Netherlands, pledged his support for workers and all business owners, and asked that the country unite to prevent the situation from spiraling out of control. The preference, he said, is a scenario where the country spreads out the rate of infection as much as possible, and he emphasized that the country must take action together to prevent two more-dangerous scenarios from occurring.
Tilburg and Breda, the two cities in the Netherlands home to the most patients with coronavirus, were also the two cities with the biggest increase in patients since Sunday. Both cities are located in the Noord-Brabant province, where at least 554 of the country's 1,413 patients reside.
The patient data released by the RIVM showed that 249 of the country's 355 municipalities are home to at least one coronavirus patient. All 12 provinces in the Netherlands now have at least 10 people who have been screened by health officials and diagnosed with the virus.
The city of Maastricht has announced that the annual King’s Day celebration will not be held this year due to measures needed to “combat the coronavirus.” The city was set to host the Dutch royal family on the April 27 holiday, the birthday of King Willem-Alexander.
Biotechnology company Curetis launched a rapid testing kit for the new coronavirus Covid-19 in Europe on Monday. The German company is registered in the Netherlands and is listed on the Euronext Amsterdam stock exchange, where its share price nearly doubled on the announcement.
The company is now making the testing kit available to laboratories in Europe - including in countries where Curetis does not yet have distribution partners, "owing to the special circumstances of the global outbreak".
The peak of the first wave of coronavirus infections in Noord-Brabant has just past, and the second wave is already beginning, according to Bart Berden, chairman of the board of the Elisabeth TweeSteden hospital in Tilburg and chairman of the regional consultative committee on acute care ROAZ in Noord-Brabant. And this wave will spread across the entire Netherlands, he said to the Volkskrant.
Another 278 people in the Netherlands tested positive for the Covid-19 variant of coronavirus, bringing the country's total number of patients to 1,413. Four more patients who tested positive with the virus died since Sunday, figures provided by public health agency RIVM showed.
"In total, 24 people have now died from the disease. The average age of the deceased is 79 years (youngest 59- oldest 94). A total of 205 patients were or have been admitted to a hospital," the RIVM said in a statement.
In various places in the Netherlands, local residents have stopped to show their support and thanks for the people working in healthcare amidst the Covid-19 crisis.
In Amsterdam, a banner was hung in view of the OLVG, saying 'thank you' to healthcare workers.