Friday 19 August 2022

Coronavirus in the Netherlands: what you need to know (November 2)

Coronavirus test location at the RAI in Amsterdam. Photo: Depositphotos.com

The government is bringing back some of its previous coronavirus prevention measures and introducing new ones, in an effort to reduce the surge in new coronavirus cases. Here is what you need to know:

Working at home
The government is strongly recommending people work at least half the week at home rather than at the office.

People are also being urged to travel outside rush hour.

Face masks
Masks will once again be compulsory in all public buildings where coronavirus passes are not required from November 6. This includes:

  • Supermarkets and shops
  • Libraries
  • At airports and railway stations
  • At colleges and universities when moving between locations

People in contact professions, such as hairdressers, will again have to wear masks, but not sex workers.

Those who do not wear a mask can be fined €95. Masks remain compulsory in taxis and on public transport.

Coronavirus pass
The use of a QR code which shows if you have either been fully vaccinated, recently recovered from coronavirus or had a negative test within 24 hours is to be extended from November 6 to cover:

  • All cafes and restaurants, including outdoor terraces
  • Casinos
  • Museums and other places which ‘people move through’
  • Indoor locations for amateur sports events for the over 18s, but not outdoors
  • Sports schools, swimming pools and fitness clubs, including canteens
  • Music and painting lessons, choirs and theatre rehearsals

Use of the pass was already compulsory in theatres, concert halls and cinemas. Testing remains free.

Booster vaccines
The over-80s will be offered a booster vaccine from December. Nursing home residents will also be offered an extra jab next month.

From January, everyone aged 60 to 80 will be able to have a booster vaccination and once they have been triple jabbed, everyone else who wants a booster will be able to come forward.

Future measures
The cabinet is also preparing rules which might be needed in the future if the infection rate does not come down. These include giving employers the right to ask their staff for a coronavirus check and to expand the use of the coronavirus pass to other places where people meet, such as non-essential shops, zoos and amusement parks.

These measures may also be implemented in specific areas where the vaccination rate is low and the hospital admission rate high.

The situation will be looked at again next week and there is a new press conference on November 12.

Note: this list was updated on November 4 to reflect changes made in parliament.

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