Coronavirus situation is ‘derailing’ in Belgium, Marc Van Ranst warns
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Coronavirus situation is ‘derailing’ in Belgium, Marc Van Ranst warns

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The spread of the coronavirus in Belgium has picked up the pace and is in some places worse than the one in hard-hit Paris, virologist Marc Van Ranst said, warning of a “derailing” situation.

“Tomorrow, Paris will close all bars for two weeks,” the leading expert said. “The incidence there is of 260 [cases] per 100,000 inhabitants. In Brussels: 472, Liège: 330, Walloon Brabant: 327.”

“Virologists have been warning for months that the situation is derailing in Belgium,” Van Ranst wrote, De Standaard reports.

His comments as the average of daily new cases in Brussels, one of the hardest-hit region of the country, rises to 500 and as health officials report that the national average of daily deaths has risen to ten.

On Monday, Paris and its suburbs were put on maximum alert as bars are ordered to close down for two weeks and universities told to halve the number of students allowed inside a lecture hall.

Van Ranst also issued a grim warning on the rise in the number of new Covid-19 hospitalisations, which in Brussels now averaged 25 per day.

“Within a few days, there will be 1,000 covid patients in the hospitals. Within a few days, dozens of people a day die from covid again. That’s the problem,” he tweeted, replying to a question about a perceived slow rise in new hospitalisations when compared to the rapid rise in the number of new cases and tests done.

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times