Steven Van Gucht: “Second wave is not only a problem of …


Thirteen municipalities already have more than 1 in 1,000 infected people in the past week. Virologist Steven Van Gucht said this on Monday during a press conference by the crisis center. The virus is therefore not only a problem in Antwerp, he emphasized.

“We can say that the virus is once again circulating intensively in our territory,” said Van Gucht, who after a holiday speaks again at the press conferences about the corona virus. The numbers continue to rise, the virologist said, including those in hospitals. Last week, there were an average of 491 new infections per day, a week earlier, there were only 292. In a week, there are 68 percent more. Since the outbreak, a total of 69,849 Belgians have been infected with the corona virus.

An average of 2.7 deaths per day was recorded in the past 7 days, 36 percent more than a week earlier. In total, there were 9,845 fatalities in our country. In the same period, hospital admissions rose by 35 percent: from an average of 17 a day last week to an average of 24 a day in the past seven days.

“In almost all provinces”

The virus is therefore not only a problem in Antwerp, Van Gucht emphasized. “We see increases in several places in almost all provinces, mainly in densely populated cities and neighborhoods with lower socio-economic status.” Most infections are still diagnosed in people in their twenties and thirties, according to Van Gucht, but the figures are also rising in other age groups.

Van Gucht also explained that the increased number of tests cannot explain the increase in the number of infections. “We do an average of 20,000 tests per day. Overall, there is a 20 percent increase in the number of tests performed, while the number of positive cases increases by 68 percent. ”

Crisis center spokesman Yves Stevens called again during the press conference to do maximum telework. That is highly recommended, and even mandatory in Antwerp if possible. “Obviously it is not possible for all sectors. Think for example of construction. Guides have been drawn up with measures to ensure that work is carried out safely where telework is not possible. ”


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