“No extra measures at the moment” says Health Minister despite rise in new cases of coronavirus

The number of people testing positive for coronavirus in Belgium is on the up again. Nevertheless, in an interview with the Francophone commercial television channel RTL-TVI the Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke (Flemish socialist) said that extra measures to curb the spread of coronavirus are currently not on the cards. 

"The situation is giving cause for concern we need to closely follow the measures that are in place”. Mr Vandebroucke added that we should remain on our guard.

During the past few days, the number of people testing positive for coronavirus has started to rise again. Figures published on Saturday showed that between 6 and 12 October an average of 2,438 people tested positive for coronavirus each day. This is up 28% on the figures for the previous week. Hospitalisations and deaths are up too.

Mr Vandenbroucke says that although the figures give cause for concern there are no immediate plans for extra measures to curb the spread of COVID-19. However, the measures already in place need to be strictly adhered to.

He called for strict check to be carried out to ensure that only people with a Covid Safe Ticket are allowed into places where this is required.

“It is an instrument to ensure safety and also in a certain sense an instrument for freedom as it gives us greater freedom in restaurants, cafés…”, the Federal Health Minister said.

"The Brussels and Walloon government have done the right thing by keeping the mandatory wearing of face coverings and by expanding the range of activities covered by the Covid Safe Ticket “

In Flanders the scope of the Covid Safe Ticket has not been extended.

"Different measures are being taken in different places because the situation is different. There is a link between the vaccination rate and the infection rate. They are further along the road in Flanders. However, I personally feel that it’s regrettable that the Flemish authorities didn’t give mayors the option of expanding the scope of the Covid Safe Ticket”. Some of the mayors in the Flemish Brabant municipalities that border Brussels had asked to be given this option.  

Mr Vandenbroucke went onto say that currently he is not in favour of giving everyone over the age of 12 a third dose of coronavirus vaccine. He added that by the beginning of November he expects to have received advice from expects on whether in addition to those already being offered a third jab (the elderly and people with certain underlying conditions) other groups, such as care professionals, should be offered a third vaccine dose.

 

 

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