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"A kiss outside is just as dangerous as a kiss indoors”, virologist says

Speaking at Friday morning’s National Crisis Centre press conference, the virologist Professor Steven Van Gucht was optimistic about the state of play with regard to the coronavirus pandemic in Belgium. 

“A long-awaited and well-deserved fall in the figures has commenced. Vaccination and the measures are now working in combination and this has served to enable us to leave the plateau level where we were at.

Professor Van Gucht went on to say that the age of those with COVID-19 is becoming younger. This is a consequence of the vaccination campaign. “More and more older people are protected”.

Nevertheless, we are not out of the woods yet. “Don’t forget that there is still a lot of the virus in circulation. We are in a transitional period. Focus on outdoor activities. It is safer there than it is indoors. However, we can still infect each other outside. A kiss outside is just as dangerous as a kiss indoors. Infections that occur outdoors are often in an informal setting. These are more difficult to trace and often don’t enter the statistics”.

On Saturday 8 May the terraces of bars and restaurants will reopen. Professor Van Gucht offers the following advice to those of us thinking of going for an al fresco meal of a few pints on the terrace of our local bar.

"Preferably go to the terrace with people that are part of your permeant bubble: the members of your family or your “cuddle contact”. Eating or drinking together outside remains riskier that going for a walk or cycle ride”. 

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