Coronavirus update: schools and more closed

Schools, child care, catering close down
Photo Credit: Pixabay

More and more measures are being taken in the Netherlands’ fight against the coronavirus. 

The National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) reported today that the death toll as a result of the coronavirus has risen to 20 in the Netherlands. The RIVM also said that the official number of patients in the Netherlands is at 1135; among them, 431 people are from Brabant.

That number is probably higher in reality because not everyone with complaints is tested anymore.

As of today, the Catherina Hospital’s visitor policy has been further tightened. To limit the spread of infection as much as possible, it has been decided that only one visitor per patient is allowed in the hospital. No visitors are allowed to wait in the hospital restaurant. In the case of a terminal patient or one in the paediatric ward, an exception can be made in consultation with the department.

The number of ventilation spaces in the Sint Anna Hospital in Geldrop has doubled. The reason for this is the code red level that has been issued to all hospitals in North Brabant.

With the doubling of the IC and ventilation capacity, the hospital is preparing for a further outbreak of the coronavirus. The hospital can also help other hospitals that are currently treating many patients.

Pressure on the cabinet to close down all schools has also been extremely high. The cabinet finally decided to close all schools in the Netherlands from tomorrow until 6 April to prevent the spread of this virus. The cabinet decided on this after consultation with educational organisations.

This was announced by Minister of Education, Arie Slob, and Bruno Bruins, the Public Health Minister during a press conference.

In the next three weeks, schools and childcare facilities will be closed. Children whose parents work in vital professions such as the fire department and police can still attend if there is no other option. The measures taken by higher education will be extended until 6 April too. All bars, restaurants, and sports clubs in the Netherlands will close their doors at 18:00 tonight and will remain so until 6 April.


Translated by: Chaitali Sengupta, who gives Inburgering classes in Meerhoven. Click here for more info.

Editor: Melinda Walraven

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