On average, there were 28 deaths as a result of the coronavirus every day in the past week in Belgium, as Covid cases continue to rise.
Between 8 and 14 November, an average of 28 people died per day from the virus, up by 23% from last week, according to figures published by the Sciensano Public Health Institute on Thursday morning.
This brings the total number of deaths since the beginning of the pandemic in Belgium to 26,484.
During the same period, an average of 10,494 new coronavirus infections were identified every day, a 27% increase from the previous seven days.
Aside from during the second wave in October last year, this is the highest number of cases recorded since the start of the pandemic, however, due to the vaccination, the number of Covid-19 deaths is lower than during the second wave, when more than 200 people died every day.
The number of tests being taken increased by 8% (80,908.6), while the positivity rate has risen by 1.9% since last week, now sitting at 13.8%.
In light of the worsening situation, and to avoid a lockdown as a result of it, Belgium’s Consultative Committee decided on Wednesday evening to make teleworking compulsory four days a week and to extend the face mask obligation to all places where a Covid Safe Ticket (CST) is required.
Between 11 and 17 November, an average of 241.1 patients suffering from Covid-19 were admitted to hospitals per day, an 18% increase since the previous week.
On Wednesday, a total of 2,809 people were in hospitals due to an infection (116 more than on Tuesday), including 568 patients being treated in intensive care (+9), with 297 on a ventilator (+5).
To cope with the influx of people being hospitalised as a result of the virus, hospitals have been asked to reserve 50% of beds in their intensive care units for Covid-19 patients by Friday.
The virus reproduction rate has slightly decreased since last week to 1.12. This figure represents the average number of people infected by each infected person, and when it is above 1, it means that the epidemic is gaining ground in Belgium.
The incidence, which indicates the number of new cases per 100,000 inhabitants, has increased by 38% and now sits at 1,138.7 over the past 14 days.
As of Tuesday, more than 8.77 million people in Belgium have received a first dose of the vaccine, representing 88% of the adult population, and 76% of the total population.
Meanwhile, more than 8.63 million people are fully vaccinated, accounting for 87% of the adult population in Belgium, and 75% of the total population.
More than 865,000 people have received a booster dose of a coronavirus vaccine, including people from certain vulnerable groups and healthcare workers, to keep the protection against the coronavirus sufficiently high. The general population will receive a booster dose of a coronavirus vaccine next year.