Covid-19 hospitalisations now decreasing in Belgium

Covid-19 hospitalisations now decreasing in Belgium
Credit: Belga

The number of new Covid-19 hospitalisations in Belgium has also started to slowly decline, following the trend of new infections, which have been dropping for several weeks now.

Between 5 and 11 April, an average of 8,585 new Covid-19 infections were identified every day, an 11% decrease from the seven days previous, according to the figures published by the Sciensano Public Health Institute on Friday morning.

The highly transmissible Omicron variant, Omicron BA.2, is now accounting for 95.7% of all cases. A new version of the Omicron coronavirus variant (BA.4) has also been reported in Belgium, however, this is not yet showing up on Sciensano's dashboard.

In the same period, the average number of PCR tests taken per day declined by 20% to 30,364.7. The positivity rate now sits at 31.1%, meaning slightly more than three out of ten tests have a positive result.

During the same week, an average of 23.6 Covid-19 patients died on a daily basis, down by 1% from the previous week. The total number of deaths in Belgium since the start of the pandemic amounts to 31,165.

This figure also includes people who died of another cause of death, but who happened to be infected, meaning they are an overestimate of the deaths caused by the virus.

Situation in hospitals

Between 8 and 14 April, an average of 201.3 patients suffering from Covid-19 were admitted to hospitals each day – a decrease of 7% on the seven days previous.

This number reflects how many people are hospitalised directly because of the virus, not those who are admitted with another condition and then test positive for Covid-19.

Credit: Belga

On Thursday, a total of 3,148 people were in Belgian hospitals due to an infection, 25 fewer than on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the number of people being treated in intensive care sits at 183 (+2).

This number covers all patients who tested positive for Covid-19, including those who were first admitted with a different condition.

Reproduction rate, incidence, and total vaccinations

The reproduction rate (Rt) has slightly increased to 1.02. This figure represents the average number of people that contract the virus from each infected person. When it is above 1, it means that the epidemic is gaining ground in Belgium.

The incidence (the number of new cases per 100,000 inhabitants) has dropped to 1,109 over the past 14 days.

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As of Tuesday, more than 9.13 million people are fully vaccinated – 89% of Belgium's adult population and 79% of the total population.

Meanwhile, more than 7.11 million people have received a booster dose of a coronavirus vaccine, representing 75% of over-18s and 62% of the entire population.

The frequency of Sciensano's update on the epidemiological situation was recently adjusted. Although it will "continue to closely monitor the Covid-19 situation in the country," it will only publish an update twice a week – on Tuesday and Friday – rather than on a daily basis.

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