Winter lockdown? Dutch virologists are anticipating stricter measures

Infections are soaring and hospitals are pretty much at capacity. Dutch virologists have outlined some options to help the Netherlands contain the coronavirus in the coming weeks and months.

The Netherlands has been recording well over 10,000 infections each day for the past several days — niet goed (not good)!

While hospital admissions are much lower than in previous waves — proof that vaccination has been effective — virologists are preparing for new measures to ensure that the virus doesn’t get further out of control, RTL Nieuws reports.

What is the solution?

Professor of microbiology, Bert Niesters says that the solution is in our behaviour — currently, he thinks that too much is going wrong. For example, that QR codes aren’t being checked.

He also emphasized the importance of working from home, travelling as little as possible, and most important of all: getting tested if you have complaints. Take one (a corona test) for the team!

“Something heavier is coming”

Virologist Gorben Pijlman expects that even stricter measures are on their way. He says that “the effect of the measures that came into effect last weekend cannot be seen at all.” He adds that “Last week’s press conference seems to have been more of a preparation that something heavier is coming.” — So Game of Thronesy. 😳

OMT advice: measures instead of a lockdown

The Outbreak Management Team (OMT) has already recommended new advice to the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. This advice involves “aggravating measures to broadly limit contacts” — basically, interrupting the spread of the virus. The OMT  has already advised the cabinet to “make the necessary preparations now.”

Drastic measures

Closing bars and other venues at 10 PM has been proposed in order to limit the spread of the virus — but this suggestion has faced criticism because everyone loves an afterparty. 🎉

Other proposed measures include the reintroduction of a fixed seating obligation and the 1.5-meter distance. Wat jammer (what a shame)! The closure of all non-essential sectors could also be on the cards.

The OMT is also discussing more drastic measures specifically for unvaccinated people, such as “broadening the use of the coronavirus admission ticket” in contact professions, retail, and some public spaces. 💇🏻‍♂️🛍

Introduction of 2G measures

Virologists are also discussing the possible introduction of 2G measures, similar to those that have been introduced in Germany. This would mean that people who do not have a vaccination certificate or proof of a negative test would no longer be permitted in certain places, like restaurants.

A different situation to last winter

Despite this new spike in infections and hospital admissions, health minister Hugo de Jonge has said that this winter will be different to last winter and that the peak will not be as high. 🤞

What are your thoughts on these possible new measures? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image: NewAfrica/Depositphotos

Jen Lorimer 🇿🇼
Jen Lorimer 🇿🇼
An avid tea drinker, Jen was born and raised in Zimbabwe. She moved to Utrecht in 2017 to pursue her history degree. She loves people-watching, canoeing the Utrecht canals, and observing how the Dutch come alive in summer. Having been traumatised by a Dutch circle party, Jen wants to help equip other internationals with tips and tricks to survive and thrive in this wonderful flat country.


  1. Oh, boy! We didn’t learn last winter… None of the measures so far reduced the numbers. So, why are we doing them all over again?

    – Albert Einstein: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”.

    Since when De Jonge can predict the numbers? And the last one – just look 80 back!

  2. The 2G in Germany doesn’t mean vaccination or negative test, it means vaccination or recovered from COVID. A negative test isn’t going to be accepted.


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