Credit; Belga

309 new people have tested positive for the new coronavirus (Covid-19), confirmed the FPS Public Health during a press conference on Thursday.

145 of the newly infected people live in Flanders, 95 live in Wallonia, and 48 live in Brussels. The FPS does not have further information on the place of residence of 21 other people. The total number of cases in Belgium, since the beginning of the pandemic, is 1,795.

The total number of people admitted to hospital because of the coronavirus on Thursday is 634. “This is an increase of 187 patients in one day,” said professor Steven Van Gucht. “We see that the number of patients doubles about every three days,” he added.

Of those patients, 130 are in the intensive care unit, an increase of 30 people in the last 24 hours. However, since 13 March, 155 people have also been discharged from the hospital.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, 21 patients have died from the consequences of the virus in Belgium.

“We have grabbed this virus by the scruff of its neck. It is still fighting very hard, but it is important that we do not give up now,” Van Gucht said, stressing the importance of strictly following the government’s measures.

The FPS Public Health stressed that getting outside the house with the family is allowed, but asked people to not take the entire family to the supermarket. “And once again, please do not bring your children to their grandparents, we strongly advise against it,” Van Gucht added.

Additionally, the information phone line has received 9,000 calls on Wednesday, according to the National Crisis Centre. “We ask people to first go and check the info website to avoid an overload, the website is updated regularly with the most recent information,” the Centre said.

“The golden rule for this is: in case of doubt, stay home,” the Centre stressed.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

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