The coronavirus count for the Netherlands has climbed to 7431 after 1019 patients tested positive since the last update. 78 people have died in the same period of time.
It brings the total death count for the infectious disease in the Netherlands to 434. A further 315 people were admitted to hospital, with 2151 beds occupied, or previously used.
However, the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) says the number of patients admitted to hospital and the death rate is increasing slower than without containment measures in place. That means self-isolation and quarantine tactics could be having the desired effect. We’ll know more later this week.
RIVM also says that Noord-Brabant remains the epicentre of the virus in the Netherlands, with 2161 infections. South Holland has 1042, and North Holland has 1029. If you’re living in Friesland or Drenthe you can breathe a sigh of relief — only 71 and 72 people respectively have tested positive in these areas.
RIVM is also cautioning people not to overreact to the daily statistics. Sometimes death reporting is delayed by several days, so daily figures can be misleading.
What else has been going on today?
We started off the day with the news that Roche, a major pharmaceutical company in the Netherlands, was slowing progress on mass testing for coronavirus. Due to a vendor lock-in, Dutch laboratories using Roche machinery also have to use Roche materials: which includes some which are crucial for the test. But because Roche has a shortage of these materials and won’t share the prescription with other laboratories, mass testing is off the cards for the moment.
Ventilators in high demand
Hospitals will likely need to use one ventilator for multiple patients, according to The Dutch Association of Intensive Care (NVIC). Ventilators are crucial in keeping patients who are severly affected by coronavirus alive, but there will probably be a shortage of them when the illness reaches its peak. Luckily, modern ventilators have more power than is needed for one person, though they were not designed to be shared.
Economy on a slippery slope
Even after coronavirus stops being a fatal threat to individuals, it is likely to decimate the economy with a recession. The Dutch economy is expected to shrink by 7.7% this year. Unemployment is already a problem, and likely to get worse, but the government is trying to mitigate the damage.
Retirees return to work
20,000 retired healthcare workers have decided to return to work in the Netherlands to help with the coronavirus outbreak. This is possible thanks to a relaxed law instituted by Minister Bruins, which allows those who retired after 2017 to return to work.
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