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Antwerp hospital experiences late coronavirus peak

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A hospital in Antwerp province has said that the region is seeing a peak in Covid-19 hospitalisations despite officials indicating that the epidemic is declining in Belgium.

A doctor in the AZ Klina hospital in Brasschaat, a municipality north of Antwerp, said that the facility’s Covid-19 ward remained crowded and that admissions continued to increase.

In a Facebook post that now appears to be deleted, the doctor wrote that despite the positive news in the rest of the country, hospital workers in the region were only now entering the peak of the epidemic.

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“Our region is only being severely affected by the virus, in AZ Klina we see an increase in the number of [Covid-19] patients,” the doctor wrote, HLN reports, adding that staff was barely managing to handle the workload.

While health officials have said that receding deaths and hospitalisation numbers show that the situation in Belgium appears to be evolving favourably, a spokesperson for the hospital said that the peak appeared to have hit their region weeks later.

“First there was a peak in Limburg, then in Kempen hospitals and in Mol and Turnhout — Antwerp hospitals were only discussed after that and our region reached its peak even later than in most hospitals in Antwerp,” spokesperson Joanne De Roeck said.

De Roeck said that the delayed wave of Covid-19 cases in the area could be explained by the fact that they are located in a mostly rural area.

The spokesperson said that the doctor’s post on Facebook aimed to warn that, despite the relaxation of some lockdown measures, the epidemic was not through.

“It is currently very busy in our Covid-19 department, but the curves are no different from those seen in other hospitals,” she said. “We hope to be able to see a decrease after this weekend.”

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times

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