This is evidenced by the latest weekly figures published by RIVM this afternoon. On August 18, 2020, the week schools reopened in northern Holland, RIVM reported 4,013 positive tests per week.
Regarding the differences between the situation from last year and now, it should be noted that the testing policy has been significantly expanded. For example, the advice for a long time has been to test only if there is a complaint. This testing policy has now been expanded and testing is also recommended for children, which was not the case before.
The reproduction number, which indicates how quickly the coronavirus is spreading, is also up slightly. The number rose above 1 for the first time in about a month. It now stands at 1.01 while it was 0.97 on Friday.
Positive tests have been reported
Hospitals also complete
But this blanket testing policy does not explain the complete difference. In hospitals, the starting point at the end of the school vacation is also different from last year.
According to the National Coordination Center for Patient Distribution (LCPS), there are currently 691 COVID-19 patients in hospital. 461 of them are in the nursing department and 230 are in intensive care. A year ago, there were a total of 171, of whom 42 were in intensive care.
Nursing department and intensive care function
Three-quarters of all vaccinations
After schools reopened and holidays ended in 2020, the number of infections and hospitalizations rose rapidly in September and October. The chance that it will now rise just as quickly has greatly diminished because so many people have now been vaccinated.
Figures from the National Institute of Virology show that nearly 85 percent of the population age 18 or older have received at least one vaccine. Three-quarters of adults are fully vaccinated. Among adolescents (12-17 years) this share is much lower (14%).
Vaccination rate per year of birth
The coming weeks should show whether vaccines sufficiently prevent new infections and hospitalizations. With schools reopening, holidays ending for many workers and events with a large crowd, such as Formula 1 in Zandvoort and football matches, it will be exciting weeks though.
For now, the government is assuming the numbers will remain relatively low, so on September 20, among other things, the 1.5m rule could be issued and more events allowed.
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