COVID-19: Number of positive tests stagnates, number of hospitalisations falls

The public health science institute Sciensano has released the latest figures on the coronavirus pandemic in Belgium. They show a fall in the number of hospitalisations and a rise in the number of deaths of people with COVID-19. Meanwhile, the 7-day average for new infections remains unchanged. 

On Wednesday 25 August (the latest date for which figures are available) 8,378,601 people in Belgium had received at least dose of coronavirus vaccine. This is 85% of the adult population and 72.7% of the population as a whole. 7,967,063 people are fully immunised. This is 82.8% of all adults and 69.2% of the population as a whole.

In Flanders 5 million people are fully immunised. This is 89% of all adults. In Wallonia (excluding the German-speaking municipalities) this is 78%. In the 9 German-speaking municipalities in the East of Liège Province this is 73%. The Brussels-Capital Region is still a long way behind the rest of the country with just 61% of all adults fully vaccinated there.

During the week from 20 to 26 August an average of 57 people with COVID-19 were hospitalised in Belgium each day. This is 6% down on the average for the previous week. On Thursday the hospitals reported 57 new admissions. 75 COVID-19 patients were discharged. This brings the total number of patients with COVID-19 that are being cared for in the country’s hospitals to 602 (-16). Of these 182 (+6) are on ICUs of whom 98 (+8) require ventilators.

During the week from 16 to 23 August an average of 6 people with COVID-19 died in Belgium each day, a rise of 77% on the previous week. Since the onset of the pandemic 25,354 people with COVID-19 have died in Belgium.

During the week from 16 to 23 August an average of 1,944 positive coronavirus tests were recorded each day. This is the same as during the previous week.

During the same period an average of 43,400 coronavirus tests were carried out each day. This is down 12% on the average for the previous week. Of those tested 5% tested positive, a rise of 0.7 percentage points on a week ago. 5% is the WHO’s threshold above which it considers an epidemic to “be giving cause for concern”. The European Centre for Disease Control’s threshold is 4%.

The basic reproductive rate for coronavirus in Belgium now stands at 0.97. This means that every 100 people with the virus infect a further 97 others. 

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