For the first time in a long time, Flanders has turned green on the coronavirus map of the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) on Thursday.
While large parts of Europe have turned green in the latest update of the map, Wallonia and the Brussels-Capital Region are still coloured orange, for the time being.
A Region gets a green colour on the ECDC map if it has an incidence rate of fewer than 50 confirmed coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants over the past two weeks.
In practice, the EU Member States have agreed that they will not impose additional travel restrictions, such as quarantine or testing, on travellers coming from green regions.
Updated ? maps are online!These maps aim to support the @EUCouncil recommendation on a coordinated approach to the restriction of #FreeMovement during #COVID19 pandemic. See the map on our portal: https://t.co/CcBVx6B0o5 Learn more: https://t.co/TE7KD96Va2 pic.twitter.com/TqOQP11ook — ECDC (@ECDC_EU) June 24, 2021
On Tuesday, virologist and interfederal Covid-19 spokesperson Steven Van Gucht already stated that if Belgium’s infections continue to drop at the current rate, the whole country will likely turn green on the map before the start of the summer holidays.
“At this rate, we will reach an incidence of fewer than 50 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants by 28 June,” he said during a press conference.
As of Thursday, the whole of Belgium has an incidence rate of 71 confirmed cases per 100,000 over the past two weeks, according to the latest update by the Sciensano national health institute.
However, while the figures are falling rapidly and Belgium is moving in the right direction, Van Gucht stressed the trend can still reverse as long as many people are not fully vaccinated, as seen in the UK.
Currently, 71,3% of the adult population has received its first vaccination (57,2% of the total population in Belgium), while 39,8% of adults have been fully vaccinated (31,9% of the total population).