The Covid-19 situation in Belgium continues to improve, as an average of 1,706 new daily infections were identified between 9 and 15 August, down 32% from the previous seven days, and the lowest rate since the start of June.
The average number of tests taken per day decreased to 7,900, around 3,000 fewer than on Friday last week, while the positivity rate dropped to 25.4%, meaning slightly more than one in four tests have a positive result, according to figures published by the Sciensano Institute of Public Health on Friday morning.
Omicron BA.5 remains the dominant strain, accounting for 94.3% of all infections. The strain is said to be no more or less infectious than the other Omicron subvariants but is effective at circumventing people’s accumulated immunity.
Meanwhile, an average of 9.7 Covid-19 patients died each day over the past seven days (the same as last week), while the total number of deaths since the start of the pandemic is 32,436. This includes people who died of another cause but who were infected, meaning it is an overestimate of Covid-19 deaths.
Situation in Belgian hospitals
In the last seven days, an average of 87 patients suffering from Covid-19 was admitted to hospitals each day – a 12% decrease from the previous seven days. This only includes the number of people hospitalised because of the virus.
On Thursday, a total of 1,183 people were in Belgian hospitals due to an infection, around 170 fewer than on Friday last week, while the number of people being treated in intensive care dropped to 88. This number includes patients admitted with a different condition who later tested positive.
Reproduction rate, incidence, and total vaccinations
The reproduction rate (the average number of people that contract the virus from each infected person) has once again increased, sitting at 0.91. When it is below 1, it means that the epidemic is slowing down in Belgium. The incidence (the number of new cases per 100,000 inhabitants) has decreased to 256 over the past 14 days.
- Monkeypox infections rise exponentially, more than 35,000 global cases
- Excess mortality in EU and Belgium fell to 6% in June
As of Tuesday, almost 9.1 million people are fully vaccinated – 89% of Belgium's adult population and 79% of the total population. This figure was higher, but since the end of June, this figure takes into account vaccinated people who died.
Meanwhile, more than 7.18 million people have received a booster dose of the vaccine, representing 76% of over-18s and 62% of the entire population. From September onwards, an additional booster will be available to a larger group of the population. Find out if you are eligible here