345 additional people have tested positive for the new coronavirus (Covid-19) in Belgium in the last 24 hours, confirmed the federal public health ministry on Saturday.
This brings the total number of cases in Belgium since the beginning of the pandemic to 54,989. The total reflects all people in Belgium who have been infected, and includes confirmed active cases as well as patients who have since recovered, or died from the consequences of the virus.
208 of the newly-infected people live in Flanders, 99 live in Wallonia, and 36 live in Brussels. No information was available on the residence of two remaining cases.
21,686 coronavirus tests have been taken in Belgium in the past 24 hours, of which 11,338 in the clinical labs, and 10,348 by the federal testing platform.
65 new patients were admitted to hospital in the last 24 hours, and 159 were discharged. The total number of people in hospital because of the coronavirus at the moment is 1,750.
Of the patients in hospital, 364 are in the intensive care unit, 16 fewer than yesterday. “As with the other trends over the last 7 days, this trend also decreasing by about 4% per day,” crisis centre spokesperson Professor Steven Van Gucht said yesterday.
47 new deaths have been reported, bringing the total number of people who died because of the coronavirus to 9,005. “The trend in the number of newly-reported deaths also decreases by about 6% per day,” Van Gucht said.
“Of the new fatalities, 27 took place in hospital and 22 in care homes. Of the 9,005 deaths, 48% took place in hospital, 51% in a care home and only 0.6% elsewhere. Deaths in hospital are all confirmed Covid-19 cases, while those in care homes are 23% confirmed by test and 73% presumed by symptoms.
Earlier in the week, Prof Van Gucht commented on Belgium’s death toll in comparison with other countries.
“From Monday, a lot of things will be possible again, such as going to the hairdresser or to the zoo,” said Yves Stevens, also a spokesperson for the National Crisis Centre. “But it is up to all of us to keep respecting to measures. Our behaviour will determine the rest of the curve. Together, we will move forward safely, step by step,” he added.