Omicron boosts new coronavirus cases 35% in a week
After a month of decline, the number of positive coronavirus tests in the Netherlands is rising again, public health institute RIVM said in its latest weekly update on Tuesday.
In total, 113,554 positive tests were reported in the week to Tuesday morning, a rise of 35% on the previous week. The increase is despite the lockdown which has closed non-essential shops, cafes, restaurants and museums.
The RIVM said the rise of the more infectious Omicron variant is behind the increase. Omicron has been dominant in the Netherlands since before Christmas.
Some 31% of tests carried out at regional health board testing centres are now positive, and 88% of people who have a PCR test to confirm a positive self test also have the virus, the RIVM said.
Hospital admissions, however, continue to decline. In total, 995 people were admitted to hospital in the past week, compared with 1101 a week earlier. Fewer people are also being admitted to intensive care.
Currently, 1706 people are being treated in hospital for coronavirus, compared with 2006 a week earlier. Of them, 477 are in intensive care, down from 535 last week.
Government health advisors do, however, expect hospital admissions to start picking up again in mid January because Omicron is so infectious.
Most new infections are among people in their 20s but there has been no increase in cases in the under 10s.
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