SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – The number of people testing positive for coronavirus in the Netherlands rose by 1,019 overnight to 7,431, the public health institute RIVM said in its Thursday update.
The number of deaths rose by 78 to 434, the RIVM said. In total, 2,151 people have been or are currently hospitalised, a rise of 315 on Wednesday. The RIVM said the hospitalisation rate and the number of deaths is rising more slowly than they would have done if the government had not introduced measures to keep people apart.
The impact of social distancing will be more visible at the end of the week or early next week, the health institute said. Noord-Brabant continues to have the most positive tests, with 2,161 but Zuid-Holland and Noord-Holland both now have over 1,000 positive cases.
Friesland and Drenthe have fewest cases – just 71 and 72 respectively. Meanwhile, health minister Hugo de Jonge has told parliament that the Netherlands will have enough intensive care beds for the expected peak in demand on April 1.
The Netherlands is scaling up its provision from 1,150 IC beds to 1,600, of which 575 are reserved for non-corona patients, De Jonge said. Some 40 IC patients in Brabant are being moved to other hospitals in the Netherlands where there is more capacity today.
In addition, 20,000 former doctors and nurses have also come forward to say they are willing to jump in and help if it becomes necessary.