“We’re veering away from the most pessimistic curve”

Belgian virologist Marc Van Ranst has said that without measures the curve of Belgian COVID-19 deaths would have risen far more steeply, but he added “It’s too early for optimism”.

Without the restrictions imposed by the Belgian government deaths linked to COVID-19 would have been far higher says the virologist, but at the minute he isn’t prepared to say that we are already succeeding in flattening the notorious curve.

“Our curve is moving away from the most pessimistic curve, but it’s too early to be very optimistic about that”.

Since the start of the outbreak ‘flattening the curve’ showing the number of corona patients has dominated everything. The aim of this gigantic operation that it forcing us all to stay at home is to ensure our hospitals aren’t overwhelmed and that everybody can be treated.

Are we on the right track?

Virologist Marc Van Ranst: “It’s hard to explain.  You see the figures increasing every day.  In this phase this is quite normal.  You can’t stop it, because at the minute we are trying to turn a very big disaster into a big disaster.”

In 24 hours to Sunday 78 people died of COVID-19 in Belgium.  The number of patients in hospital and in intensive care continue to rise.  Prof Van Ranst says that without the measures that have been taken the curves of these figures would have been far steeper.  He sees the curves edging away from the most pessimistic projection, but insists on waiting a few days longer and seeing the daily evolution in hard figures before voicing optimism.