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Second wave of coronavirus pandemic was more deadly than the first

Speaking at Tuesday morning’s press conference on the latest figures relating to the coronavirus pandemic in Belgium the virologist Steven Van Gucht said that the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic in Belgium had been even more deadly than the first. Furthermore “2020 was one of the deadliest years since the Spanish flu pandemic in 1918”. 

"The peak in the number of deaths during this second wave was lower than during the first wave. However, as the number of deaths is only falling slowly the second wave has been more deadly”, Professor Van Gucht explained. On Sunday the total number of coronavirus deaths in Belgium exceeded 20,000. The official death toll from the virus currently stands at 20,122. The latest 7-day rolling average stands at 53 people with the virus dying each day.

With regard to rise in the number of people testing positive for coronavirus (and the increase in the number of people being tested) Professor Van Gucht said “The situation remains fragile and an upsurge in the next couple of weeks is certainly possible”.

The virologist added that it is also noticeable that the number of people testing positive during the past week is still lower than what it was during the weeks prior to the Christmas holidays.

"We see an increase among all age demographics, but it is most pronounced among teenagers and young adults between the ages of 20 and 40, as well as among the over 90s. People in their 20s and 30s have the highest number of infections. There are increases in all provinces, ranging from +2% in Luxembourg Province to  +94% in Brussels. This is almost a double in Brussels compared with the previous week. The increase is above all among young adults between the ages of 20 and 40. The increase is mainly in Etterbeek and Elsene, municipalities with a very international population, when many people that have returned from trips abroad live."

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