The number of coronavirus patients in intensive care has fallen to its lowest level for eight weeks, according to the latest figures from the public health agency RIVM.
Another 20 people were transferred to the ICU in the last 24 hours, the seventh day in a row that the figure has been below 30. At the peak of the second wave in early January between 40 and 55 new intensive care admissions were recorded per day.
The total number of 533 is 17 lower than on Tuesday and 80 lower than last Wednesday. The last time similar figures were posted was on December 16. In total 1,990 patients are in hospital, a drop of 20 in the last 24 hours.
While hospital admissions are falling steadily, the downward trend in positive coronavirus tests has slowed in the past week as more infectious strains gain the upper hand. The RIVM said in its latest weekly report that the B-117 strain, also known as the ‘British variant’ was on the increase and is now responsible for around two-thirds of infections.
Case numbers have been distorted in the last few days by the closure of testing stations because of the winter weather. In the last 24 hours another 3,226 cases were added to the total, around 1,500 more than on Monday but below the seven-day average figure.
Another 78 deaths were recorded on Tuesday, while the weekly average has fallen to 58 from 65 a week ago. The number of nursing homes with at least one positive test in the last 14 days is also down, from 615 a week ago to 549.