1,298 new people have tested positive for the new coronavirus (Covid-19), confirmed the FPS Public Health during a press conference on Thursday.
857 of the newly-infected people live in Flanders, 256 live in Wallonia, and 164 live in Brussels. The FPS does not yet have further information on the place of residence of 21 other people. The total number of cases in Belgium, since the beginning of the pandemic, is 6,235. Read more.
While coronavirus has gripped the world, mobility in many big cities in Europe has almost ground to a halt.
Citymapper, a public transport app, has created its own index showing the percentage of people moving compared to usual, the Citymapper Mobility Index, by keeping track of movements in major cities. As the data is collected on a daily basis, the impact of the countries’ lockdowns and other measures to contain the virus is very noticeable. Read more.
Despite requests from other countries to help with rising numbers of infected, Belgium will not take additional coronavirus patients from abroad at this time.
As more and more states fear that their health care systems will be overwhelmed by the influx of patients, calls for European solidarity have become increasingly urgent. Requests to Belgium from hospitals in the Netherlands and Italy have been refused, Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès’ office informed the newspaper ‘De Tijd’. Read more.
The federal police has asked the government’s crisis centre for a clearer indication of the rules relating to activities that are allowed to take place outside the home.
Since the introduction of the lockdown, the general rule is to stay at home, with few exceptions. Most are clear: visit to the doctor or the pharmacy, shopping for food, helping someone who needs it, going to the bank, post office or petrol station.
And, for those unable to work from home, travelling to and from the workplace.
There remains the question of exercise, however, and that is where the rules need clarification, police say. Read more.
The rule of the day may be to maintain a distance of 1.5m from each other, but that hasn’t got in the way of young love, according to Sensoa, the non-profit for sexual health.
“Every form of sex is ill-advised,” spokesperson Boris Cruyssaert told VRT Radio. “There are still people coming to hospital with new cases of sexually transmitted diseases, and that is worrying.”
As we have seen since the days of the Montagues and the Capulets, not even an outright ban can do enough to calm the ardour of those experiencing the rising sap of springtime. Especially when the internet and social media are able to come right into the homes of those sitting longingly in isolation. Read more.