Covid-19 update: figures keep improving, but omicron is looming: "Week figures to rise in the weekend"

All corona parameters in Belgium keep going the right way, but the drop in the number of new cases seems to be slowing down. This due to the emerging omicron variant of corona virus, but Belgium is still behind France, the Netherlands and the U.K. where omicron is concerned. "Week figures for Belgium are expected to go up in the weekend."

The week running to 26 December (last Sunday) saw 6,446 new cases each day. This is a 21-percent decrease on the week. While the drop is still outspoken, it is less pronounced than a week ago, when we saw drops of around 35 percent. 

The omicron variant has become dominant in Belgium as well, but the impact on the figures seems relatively modest for the moment. There is no impact yet on other parameters like hospitalisations. While experts warn that Belgium is bound to follow in the footsteps of the U.K. and France (with a tsunami of positive cases), they point to the fact that Belgium has come a long way with its booster campaign and that it is still unclear how ill people are becoming after contracting omicron. 

The Belgian biostatistician Geert Molenberghs estimates that the number of cases will go up as from Saturday (when looking at week figures): "We see a clear increase in new cases on a daily basis. The figure for last Monday stands at more than 13,000 for the moment. This will also be the case for Tuesday, which means that the rolling average will probably go up as from next Saturday." 

The number of corona patients that has to be taken to hospital went down to reach 132 per day over the past week (-20 percent on the week). The total number of corona patients in Belgian hospitals has shrunk to 1,870 (-19 percent). 566 patients are in intensive care (-18 percent on the week) of which 337 are on ventilators (-17 percent). 

The week running to 26 December saw 31 fatalities that can be linked to corona virus (-16 percent) each day.  

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