The British variant of coronavirus may be the dominant virus type in the Netherlands as early as the second or third week of March, with potentially significant consequences for the peak load of hospitals. This warns Ernst Kuipers of the National Network Acute Care.
Demissionary Minister De Jonge announced this week that the British variant now accounts for 3 to 5 percent of the infestations in our country. “We know that the new variant will be in the Netherlands from the end of November and will spread faster. If this goes as fast as in England and Ireland, then we have to take into account a peak load that is as high as in the first wave,” says Kuipers to DeccEit.
He speaks of a race against the clock to vaccinate everyone as soon as possible and prioritize the people most affected by the disease. “A repetition of the first coronapic can be prevented if measures are taken quickly.”
Kuipers emphasises that they are assumptions based on data we have so far, but that we need to prepare for the possible scenarios. “You hope it doesnt happen, but the hospitals are checking again to see if were ready for a new increase in covid patients.”
In a technical briefing for MPs, Jaap van Dissel (RIVM) did not expect the British corona variant to become the dominant virus variant in the Netherlands in the very short term. He responded to a question from GreenLeft MP Kröger, who asked whether this variant would become dominant in the Netherlands “within four to six weeks”.
Van Dissel does not think it is so likely that it will happen at the end of February. However, he expects the English variant to suppress our old type in the long run. “But thats actually a natural process.” He did not mention a term.
According to Van Dissel, research further shows that children do not spread the British variant extra, as was previously feared.
Ernst Kuipers also responds to the resignation of the Cabinet and its consequences for combating corona: