‘European solidarity’: Belgium will send Covid-19 patients to Germany
Share article:
Share article:

‘European solidarity’: Belgium will send Covid-19 patients to Germany

Credit: Belga

From now on, Belgian hospitals can send coronavirus patients to hospitals in Germany if necessary, Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke told the House on Thursday.

Vandenbroucke made arrangements about the possible transfer of patients with his German federal colleague Jens Spahn, as well as with the German regions closest to Belgium, North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate.

“I am very pleased with the spontaneous and very generous attitude of our German colleagues,” Vandenbroucke said, adding that they immediately offered to take patients from Belgium if they had places available.

“A fine example of self-evident European solidarity,” Vandenbroucke said, who said that Belgian hospitals should make use of the offer. “It is simply about making efficient use of our hospital capacity. In Germany, there are a lot of intensive care beds.”

Shortly after Vandenbroucke’s announcement, at least two Belgian patients were already transferred to Germany, according to a correspondent of the German ZDF.

Related News:

 

However, it would not concern large groups of patients. “These are delicate decisions, that should be considered at a patient-by-patient basis,” he added.

In the meantime, Belgian hospitals are moving into the final phase of their nationwide coronavirus hospital response plan.

On Thursday morning, national health institute Sciensano announced that a total of 5,924 coronavirus patients were admitted to hospital, which is about 200 more than the total of 5,759 Covid-19 patients who were in hospital during the peak in April.

In a last-minute change, Belgium’s Hospital & Transport Surge Capacity body ordered hospitals to skip over Phase 2A and move straight into Phase 2B by Monday 2 November, which will require hospitals to create 500 new intensive care beds and 300 beds for intensive oxygen therapy and to cancel more non-urgent procedures and consultations.

“It is pitiful to see history repeating itself,” Marc Noppen, CEO of UZ Brussel university hospital, said in a press release, adding: “but the influx of Covid-19 patients leaves us with no choice.”

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Experts call for more widespread use of masks as figures rise
As coronavirus figures continue to rise, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has suggested that people return to wearing masks when indoors with ...
Belgium wants to recover €420 million in wrongfully paid out coronavirus aid
The Belgian State intends to recover €420 million of unduly paid Covid-19 aid, La Libre Belgique reported on Thursday. The electronic Council of ...
Why the fight for transgender rights is polarising Europe 
Year after year, Samuel De Schepper would ask Santa Claus to bring him a penis for Christmas. Born female and attending an all girl’s Catholic ...
New offshore wind farm officially opened
Despite being operational since the end of 2020, the SeaMade offshore wind farm was officially inaugurated on Wednesday by Prime Minister Alexander ...
Contact tracers have no time for calls, only texts, amid rising cases
Contract tracers will no longer make phone calls to the high-risk contacts of people who test positive for the coronavirus beginning from Wednesday, ...
Belgium holds on to top spot in FIFA rankings despite recent losses
Once again, Belgium's Red Devils have held onto their position at the top of the world football rankings, according to an update released by the ...
Proximus pushes for high-speed internet in Brussels and Wallonia
Fifteen municipalities in Wallonia should soon have access to high-speed internet through the rollout of fibre optics in the region, telecoms giant ...
Why Belgium is regulating sex work
After decades of confusing rules and hypocritical policy, Belgium is finally regulating sex work by removing prostitution from the criminal law. ...
World’s largest chocolate warehouse opens in Flanders
On Thursday, Barry Callebaut – the largest global chocolate processor and manufacturer – opened the world's largest chocolate warehouse in Lokeren, ...
Belgium in Brief: Equal Opportunity To Dance
There's a phrase where I'm from, more often said in jest nowadays, but it came to my mind this morning: "Ye dancin'?" (Are you dancing?), one ...
Farmer discovers cocaine in banana boxes bought in Brussels
A Flemish farmer who purchased boxes of bananas at the market in Brussels on Tuesday came home to discover large amounts of cocaine packed among the ...
Changes to speed cameras increase likelihood of a ticket
Changes to the way speed cameras work in Flanders and Wallonia will increase the likelihood of receiving a ticket when cars pass them above the ...