Coronavirus continues to sweep across the Netherlands and the globe. Here’s up-to-date information, as it happens, on COVID-19 in Holland.
The Netherlands reported its first confirmed case of coronavirus on February 27, 2020. Over one and a half years later, a sense of normality was somewhat returning to the country as vaccination rates went up and measures are eased.
But now in November 2021, coronavirus numbers are higher than ever and on November 26 Rutte and De Jonge gave another press conference and announced further new measures.
This page is updated every Tuesday as official figures are released from the Dutch health authority (RIVM).
Current figures COVID-19: November 16 – November 23, 2021
Total confirmed cases of coronavirus to date:
(+153,957 in last week)
Total deaths in the Netherlands to date
(+289 in last week)
Hospitalisations to date
(+1,833 in last week)
Last updated: 15:30, November 23, 2021
Note: Each Tuesday, the numbers for the preceding week become accurate. Usually, Tuesdays have the highest numbers of the week because of this. Weekends and public holidays can all cause delays in testing data.
What national measures are currently in place?
On November 12, the Dutch cabinet introduced new coronavirus measures and announced the return of some previous ones. These came into effect on November 13.
Current measures in effect
- Face masks are still mandatory on public transport, including aircrafts, trains, buses, trams and metros, and other commercial public transport. Face masks are also mandatory in airports.
- You must wear a face mask in all indoors public spaces where “corona pass” is not required. This includes publicly-accessible buildings and covered areas such as: libraries, town halls, shops, supermarkets, game locations and amusement parks.
- In addition, face masks are also mandatory within stations and station shops as well as when walking or moving in MBOs, universities or colleges.
- Contact professionals and their clients will also be required to wear a mask once again (except for sex workers.)
- A “corona pass” QR code from the Dutch CoronaCheck app is required as proof of vaccination to enter indoor and outdoor areas of restaurants, cafés, and bars, cultural venues (such as cinemas, theatres, music venues, museums, and historic buildings), events without a fixed seat (such as fairs), and business events.
- A “corona pass” is further mandatory for audiences at sports events (unless under 18), organised sports practice for people over the age of 18 (gym, group lessons, football, swimming both indoor and outdoor), and art or cultural practices (unless under 18).
- The use of QR-codes to gain entry will be expanded to include zoos and amusement parks as well as non-essential shops and contact professions.
- You may also show a negative test result taken in the past 24 hours or proof of recovery.
- Within higher education, the number of people who may attend in person will be capped at 75. However, this will not apply during exams. Face masks are only mandatory when moving around and can be taken off when seated.
- Bars, restaurants, and cafés are allowed to open for both outdoor and indoor serving between 6 AM and 8 PM.
- A coronavirus certificate — in the form of a QR code from the Dutch CoronaCheck app or a negative test/proof of recovery taken in the past 24 hours — is currently mandatory to enter indoor and outdoor areas of bars, restaurants, and cafés (not takeaways).
- Night clubs, dance halls and discos may remain open, provided they follow the same rules as the hospitality sector. They must close at 8 PM and a corona pass/negative test/proof of recovery must be shown for entry.
- Non-essential shops must now close at 6 PM.
- Cinemas and theatres may remain open throughout the lockdown — contrary to the OMT’s advice. But with reduced attendance, QR checks and fixed seating.
- Large-scale events such as festivals, concerts, cinemas, theatres, professional sports matches, and multi-day events are open with certain conditions. These events can operate at 75% capacity without fixed seating. Venues with fixed seating may operate at full capacity and a corona pass must be shown for entry.
Visitors at home
- Visitors should be limited to a maximum of four — even if they’re vaccinated.
- Weddings and funerals have no maximum group size and may operate at full capacity. The basic rules for preventing the spread of coronavirus should be followed.
- Everyone can participate in sports activities indoors and outdoors with no distancing rules. A QR code/negative test/proof of recovery will be necessary in order to participate in a group sport (for those over the age of 18).
- Sport matches and competitions may take place. Spectators are currently not allowed at sports events.
- Travel within the EU: Travellers coming from a high-risk area within the EU are required to how a coronavirus certificate when they arrive in the Netherlands. Travellers are encouraged to do a self-test when they get home, even if they show no symptoms and are fully vaccinated. Be aware, travelling is still a risk. For the entry rules per country, go to Wijsopreis.nl or download the Travel App (in Dutch).
- Domestic travel is also possible for those who wish to go to a cabin or bungalow, provided the same measures apply as in the home.
- Travellers coming to the Netherlands from a safe country/region from outside the EU/Schengen area are required to show proof a negative test result. In some cases, a proof of vaccination is sufficient.
- Travellers coming to the Netherlands from a high-risk country are required to show a negative test result. A quarantine may be mandatory depending on which country you are coming from.
- Fully-vaccinated travellers from very high-risk no longer need to self-quarantine on arrival in the Netherlands.
The Netherlands uses an access testing system called CoronaCheck. You can use the CoronaCheck app for public locations with large amounts of people and sports events. The app generates a QR code if you are fully vaccinated or have taken an official access test no less than 24 hours before.
Work from home
- Workplaces should continue to encourage working from home as much as possible, and, preferably, at least half of the time.
Below are the standard measures that are additionally in effect:
- Keeping 1.5 metre distance at home and in public is encouraged.
- A QR code (corona certificate) is required for entry into most places (bars, restaurants, cafés, theatres, etc.)
- Working from home is still advised as much as possible.
- Face masks are to be worn by everyone above the age of 13 in public transport. Those who fail to wear a mask will be fined €95, but it will not affect their criminal record.
In addition to the national measures in place, municipalities can also implement their own measures.
What should I do if I think I have coronavirus?
If you do have symptoms you should self-quarantine. If you have a fever or a cough, you and your housemates should stay home for 72 hours after the symptoms have stopped. You should also get a coronavirus test (see next section).
Have groceries and other essentials delivered or dropped off by friends or family. If you have no choice but to go outside with symptoms, wear a face mask so you don’t risk infecting other people.
How to get a coronavirus test in the Netherlands
You can receive a coronavirus test if you have been in contact with anyone who has tested positive or if you have any coronavirus symptom(s).
You must stay at home until it is time to go to your appointment. Then, you have to bring your ID and confirmation of your appointment with you. A staff member will collect a mucus sample from your throat and nose using a cotton swab. This can be uncomfortable, but shouldn’t hurt. It normally takes up to two days to get your results.
If you test positive, the local health centre will undertake source and contact tracing to identify anyone you may have been in contact with.
Rapid tests are available from Dutch pharmacies and supermarkets. Students can sometimes order free rapid tests from their university.
What can I do to reduce the spread of coronavirus in the Netherlands?
It’s not just up to the government: we all need to do our share to slow the spread of coronavirus in the Netherlands. Here are some tips for how you can help out:
- download the CoronaMelder app to assist in contact tracing.
- avoid crowded areas,
- keep a safe distance from other people and when outside,
- avoid touching your face, especially the T-area where your nose and eyes are.
- if coughing or sneezing, do so in your elbows,
- avoid handshakes and kissing people three times on the cheeks.
Virologists suggest that you should be extra vigilant about taking public transport.
If you really need to go somewhere, then take public transport. Just make sure you stay at a safe distance from other people, that you do not touch your face after touching objects outside (such as handles in the tram), and that you wash your hands with soap as soon as you get back home.
A face mask is compulsory on public transport. You can be fined €95 if you don’t wear one.
If you’re in a risk group, don’t take public transport. And of course, if you’re sick just stay at home.
Can I get vaccinated if I live in the Netherlands?
If you are registered as a resident of the Netherlands with your municipality, you will be invited for a coronavirus vaccination. This is regardless of whether or not you have a Dutch passport.
I’m stressed about coronavirus in the Netherlands, help!
While the coronavirus is something to be taken seriously, there is also no need to overreact, panic excessively, or compulsively buy toilet paper.
Odds are that even if you do get the coronavirus, you will not die, nor will you have a severe form of it. So unless you are very old or already have dangerous pre-existing conditions, you will probably not have a terrible case.
In fact, statistically, the majority of people don’t need hospitalisation and fully recover.
Where can I find more information about COVID-19 from the officials?
The official source for information on coronavirus in the Netherlands is RIVM (Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment).
The most up-to-date information can be found on the RIVM website. This article is also constantly updated with the most current information.
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