Quarantine widely ignored, fewer people with symptoms are getting tested

Photo: DutchNews.nl
Photo: DutchNews.nl

Just 25% of people who have been in a red or amber country are sticking to the government’s recommendation that they go into quarantine for at least five days, according to a new survey by public health institute RIVM.

While quarantine is recommended for all travel from a red or amber country, it is mandatory for several countries considered to be very high risk, including India and the UK. However, on Thursday it emerged that just 23 people have been fined for not self-isolating on their arrival in the Netherlands.

The RIVM carries out regular surveys to monitor people’s attitudes to the coronavirus pandemic and how well they are sticking to the regulations – most of which have now been lifted in the Netherlands, apart from 1.5 metre social distancing.

The latest report also shows that the number of people who had a test either at a regional test centre or a commercial company has gone down.

Only 52% of people with potential systems have been tested, compared with 66% in previous surveys. People are also less likely to have a test if they have been in contact with someone with coronavirus – 79% compared with 84%.

Self testing is also on the rise. Some 17% of people in the survey had used a self test in the previous six weeks, compared with 8% in the earlier survey. But fewer than one in four did this because they had symptoms.

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