No clear explanation for slowing drop in Belgium’s Covid-19 figures, crisis centre says
Wednesday, 18 November 2020
While all indicators in Belgium are dropping, including for the first time in weeks the number of deaths, the rate at which they are dropping is slowing down, Belgium’s Crisis Centre said at a press conference on Wednesday.
“We currently don’t have a clear explanation for that,” said virologist Steven Van Gucht, “but it is an important signal that we will follow up narrowly in the coming days.”
“In any case, this slowdown is not the result of the reopening of schools,” Van Gucht underlined, “because it is still much to early to be able to see the effects of this.” It is also not linked to the expansion of the testing strategy, as testing of asymptomatic people only resumes next Monday.
The figures are currently halving every ten days, according to Van Gucht, while numbers were halving every seven to eight days until recently.
“We are seeing this slowdown in all provinces and among all age groups,” Van Gucht said, noting that East Flanders, Limburg and Walloon Brabant seemed to no longer see drops in their figures in the last two to three days.
The coming days will have to make clear whether or not this is a temporary phenomenon, the virologist said.
Belgium has reached 540,605 confirmed cases according to the latest figures, and 14,839 people have died from the virus. A total of 6,264 coronavirus patients are currently in hospital.