‘Cautious decline’ in coronavirus infections in Brussels, Crisis Centre says
Wednesday, 19 August 2020
The coronavirus situation in the Brussels-Capital Region seems to be “evolving favourably,” as the increase is starting to flatten, health officials said during a press conference on Wednesday.
As Belgium reported an average of 528 new coronavirus cases per day on Wednesday, this is the third day in a row that the figures are decreasing. “This confirms a favourable trend, at a national level at least,” said virologist and interfederal Covid-19 spokesperson Steven Van Gucht.
In the Brussels-Capital Region, the number of infections continues to rise by 118 new cases per day. “However, there are signs that the increase here is starting to flatten,” said Van Gucht. “It is possible that we are at the beginning of a cautious decline.”
The number of new hospital admissions has fallen slightly in the past week, but the highest numbers of new hospitalisations still come from Brussels and Antwerp.
If the figures continue to fall by about 15%, as they are doing now, there will be an average of around 350 new infections per day at the beginning of September, when the schools reopen.
“That remains a high number of infections. If the decline accelerates, for example by 50%, we will have 100 infections per day at the beginning of September. That would be more favourable in light of the reopening of schools,” Van Gucht said.
The situation in the Antwerp is evolving favourably, with a decrease of 34% compared to the previous week. “In the other provinces, too, the figures are decreasing, except for in Flemish Brabant, but the increase is only very slight,” he added.
“Two weeks ago, an average of 33 new admissions per day was reported. Last week, there were 30. We hope that trend will also continue,” Van Gucht said.
Additionally, more than 10 people who tested positive for the virus died per day last week, more than twice as many as the previous week. “The next few days will show whether mortality rates will fall again, and whether that increase was a temporary spike linked to the heatwave.”