For the first time since March 14, there were fewer than a hundred Covid-19 patients from the Netherlands being treated in intensive care. On Friday, 97 people were staying in the critical care department, over 14 percent lower than a day earlier, according to patient coordination office LCPS.
Thousands of employees are considering taking legal action to claim wages or vacation pay that they received late or not at all. Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, the number of requests for legal advice on this front skyrocketed, BNR reports based on figures from legal expense insurers and trade unions.
The deaths of fifteen more people were connected to Covid-19, raising the Dutch death toll to 6,005. Three of those people died on Thursday, public health agency RIVM said. Most of the other 12 deaths took place on or after Saturday, with the rest occurring in the week prior.
The fact it took about 39 days for the Netherlands to go from 5,000 to 6,000 deaths showed the long-term slow down in fatal Covid-19 cases in the country. Previously, it had taken about 30 days to get from 1,000 to 5,000 fatal outcomes as a result of the coronavirus disease.
Despite a number of coronavirus outbreaks in slaughterhouses around the world, by far not all the employees of slaughterhouses in the Netherlands are being tested for the virus. For example, GGD Hart voor Brabant only tested a sample of workers at the Vion slaughterhouse in Boxtel, and did not visit the Vion in Tilburg and Vtielco in Den Bosch, Brabants Dagblad reports.
"The question is whether we will do that," a spokesperson for GGD Hart voor Brabant said to the newspaper. "That partly depends on consultation with the Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality."
If the government does not intervene, employment in the construction sector could fall by 40 thousand full-time jobs next year due to the coronavirus crisis, the economic institute for construction EIB said in a report on Friday. According to the EIB, construction has a "late-cyclical character", which means that the effects of the corona crisis will only be felt in this sector next year, NU.nl reports.
Nearly half of the cafes and restaurants in the Netherlands kept their doors closed on Monday, despite coronavirus measures relaxing to the point they were allowed to open for the first time since mid-March, ING concluded based on an analysis of the number of card payments made at catering establishments, NOS reports.
Black Lives Matter demonstrations will be held in Utrecht, Nijmegen, and Enschede on Friday afternoon. To prevent it from getting too crowded and so that social distancing can be maintained, the organizers of the demonstrations stressed that they are only for people living in the immediate area and that more protests will be held in other places soon, ANP reports.
The first version of the government's coronavirus dashboard launched on Friday. The dashboard will bring together all the different data regarding the virus, so that it is easier to get an idea of the situation at a glance. The government also hopes that the dashboard will make it easier to detect and control a second wave of the virus, and that it will be useful to scientists researching the virus.
Two online petitions regarding Amsterdam mayor Femke Halsema received tens of thousands of signatures. One calls for her to stay on as mayor after she allowed an anti-racism and -police brutality protest to continue on Monday, despite a lack of social distancing. The other calls for her to step down.
Radio 10 DJ Lex Gaarthuis will not face prosecution for his role in writing a Carnival song in February called 'Prevention is better than the Chinese', the Public Prosecution Service confirmed on Thursday. The prosecutors determined that the song was meant to have been interpreted satirically, though it led to five people requesting charges be filed, and hundreds of discrimination reports.
High school students across the Netherlands hung their school bags on flag posts on Thursday to show that they passed their final exams. This usually happens as soon as the results of the central exam are in, but due to these tests being scrapped because of the coronavirus crisis, the Ministry of Education and the association for school pupils LAKS decided to create a national graduation day, NU.nl reports.
There were 113 people being treated for Covid-19 in intensive care at Dutch medical centers on Thursday, down three from a day earlier. Outside of the ICU, Dutch hospitals were still treating 481 patients for the coronavirus disease, a decrease of 15, according to patient coordination office LCPS.
"We expect the number to drop a bit more because the inflow has remained stable at a low level for more than three weeks since the [coronavirus] regulations have been relaxed," said Ernst Kuipers, the chair of the country's acute care network stated.
The coronavirus crisis will just about drain Amsterdam's financial reserves by the end of this year, finance alderman Victor Everhardt said in the Spring Letter for 2020. The financial consequences of the pandemic in Amsterdam are expected to amount to 260 million euros this year. "Should the deficit amount to the estimate, this means that the General Reserve position is expected to be around zero at the end of 2020," he said.
Another 13 people were confirmed to have died from Covid-19, public health agency RIVM said on Thursday. Three people were known to have died on Wednesday, and three more deaths took place on Tuesday for five in total. The rest took place in the five weeks prior.
The Dutch death toll rose to 5,990 with the latest update.
Twelve more people were also known to have been hospitalized for the coronavirus disease. The RIVM said at least eight people were admitted between Monday and Tuesday. To date, 11,771 have required treatment in a hospital for the viral infection.
A 24-year-old man was arrested for working at the Jeroen Bosch Hospital in Den Bosch as a nurse without having the proper qualifications to do so. "The suspect monitored patients and possibly administered them medication without having any qualifications to perform these actions," the Public Prosecution Service (OM) said on Thursday. The man is in custody on suspicion of fraud, forgery and theft.
The energy bill for Dutch households with a variable energy contract will decrease by an average of 6.6 percent as of July 1. That amounts to an average decrease of around 101 euros annually, price comparison site Pricewise said on Thursday based on energy rates at Vattenfall and Eneco.
At the two energy suppliers, the variable gas tariffs fell the most with a decrease of 20.4 percent. Electricity prices will be 9.62 percent lower as of July 1.
The government should continue to encourage employees to work from home in order to prevent everyone from taking the car or public transit again after the summer, according to the Coronavirus Crisis Think Tank, an initiative of the social and economic council SER. In education, a combination of online and physical education must be found, the think tank said, Het Parool reports.
A fifth of Netherlands residents are still avoiding going to the doctor when they are sick because they are worried about catching the coronavirus, or because they don't want to overburden a doctor too busy with coronavirus patients, according to a study by the Patient Federation among 7,400 respondents from a permanent patient panel, NOS reports.
There was some unrest in Rotterdam on Wednesday evening after the local authorities ended a demonstration against racist police brutality about half an hour before it was scheduled to end. The police had to intervene in a few incidents of vandalism. Two people were arrested, one for throwing a firework at a police officer, RTL Nieuws reports.
Amsterdam police chief Frank Paauw was surprised by the rapid increase in the number of demonstrators protesting against racist police brutality on Dam Square on Monday, he said on television program Op1. But police sources told NOS that the police knew the protest would be crowded hours before it started.
Primary school De Springbok in The Hague closed its doors after two teachers tested positive for the coronavirus, a spokesperson for umbrella organization De Haagse Scholen confirmed to NU.nl. The school board decided to close the primary school as a precaution and go back to distance learning for the time being.
The two infected teachers have been at home since the weekend. They received their test results on Tuesday. Seven pupils also started showing symptoms that could indicate a coronavirus infection. They will be tested soon.
Various flexible workers in the Netherlands, including students who only worked a few hours per week, will become eligible for financial assistance if they lost income as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. A new program announced by Wouter Koolmees, the Minister of Social Affairs, will allow people who qualify to claim 550 euros per month for the months of March, April, and May.
Some holiday options will be available to residents of the Netherlands this summer, Prime Minister Mark Rutte confirmed during a press conference on Wednesday. However trips to countries outside of the European Union and the Schengen Area will remain restricted to residents.
The number of Covid-19 patients being treated in intensive care on Wednesday fell by a quarter to 116 on Wednesday. The decrease of 38 patients was the biggest single-day decline since May 7, bringing the total down to its lowest point since March 14, according to data from patient coordination office LCPS.