The number of patients in intensive care units in Belgium as a result of the coronavirus has dropped below the threshold of 400, according to the latest figures from the Sciensano Public Health Institute updated on Thursday morning.
On Wednesday, a total of 1,122 people were in hospital as a result of the coronavirus (39 fewer than on Tuesday), of whom 377 (-36) people were being treated in intensive care, and 249 (-4) were on a ventilator.
The number of ICU cases has almost halved in the last two weeks and has fallen much below the threshold of 500 set by the Consultative Committee as the boundary at which it would be safe to open up more of society starting from next Wednesday.
On Friday, the Consultative Committee will meet to discuss the epidemiological situation in Belgium.
Between 26 May and 1 June, there was an average of 80.3 new hospital admissions per day due to the coronavirus, a 24% decrease compared to the previous reference period, and over 100 fewer than at the start of May.
Between 24 and 30 May, an average of 1,715 new coronavirus infections were detected per day, down by 29% compared to the previous week, continuing a period of almost uninterrupted decline.
Meanwhile, the daily average of testing over the past week decreased by 13% (an average of 43,517.1 tests were carried out) with a positive rate of 4.6% (down by 0.8%).
Since the beginning of the pandemic, 1,065,358 cases of coronavirus infection have been diagnosed in Belgium.
During the same period, an average of 14.1 people died per day from the virus (down by 23.3% from the previous week), bringing the total to 24,982 deaths since the start of the pandemic in Belgium.
The incidence, which indicates the average number of new cases per day per 100,000 inhabitants, reached 252.4, down by 19%.
The reproduction rate of the coronavirus in Belgium has gone up slightly to 0.85 after nearing 0.80 last week. When this number is below 1, it means that the epidemic gradually slowing down. The number has been lower than 1 since 22 April.
As of Tuesday, more than half of the adult population in Belgium (51.3%) received the first injection of a coronavirus vaccine. This figure equates to over 4.72 million people.
Of these, 2,193,928 people (23.8% of the adult population in Belgium) have received a second dose and are considered fully protected.