A further 4,013 people have tested positive for coronavirus in the week to August 18, the public health institute RIVM said on Tuesday. This is fractionally down on the previous week, when the number of positive tests rose by nearly 1,500 to 4,038, the RIVM said.
There are, however, major regional variations. Most new infections were again reported in Zuid-Holland province, followed by Noord-Holland and Noord-Brabant, while the number of reports from Utrecht and Flevoland is also up on previous weeks. People aged 20 to 29 continue to account for most of the positive tests.
As the number of positive tests stabilises, the percentage of people testing positive for the virus is also unchanged at 3.5%, the RIVM said. The key infection rate, or R number, is also down slightly at 1.19.
At the same time, 50 more people have been taken to hospital, a rise of 12 on last week. And despite the rise in infections among young adults, the over 60s continue to account for 70% of hospital admissions, as they did at the start of the pandemic.
Sixteen people have died after testing positive for the virus, compared with just four in the previous seven day period. A further 25 people have been taken to intensive care.
Despite fears that people were becoming less willing to be tested, more people have gone through the process. Regional health board figures show 102,000 people were tested up to August 18, a rise of 3,500 on the previous week.
Health officials have now identified 438 active Covid-19 clusters – or groups in which at least three people have been infected.
Prime minister Mark Rutte and health minister Hugo de Jonge will hold a joint press conference on Tuesday evening, during which they are expected to announce new regional measures to stem the spread of the virus.
At the same time, the government’s Outbreak Management Team is recommending that the quarantine period for people who have been in a risky country be cut from 14 days to 10.