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New COVID-19 cases surge during holiday season in Belgium

New COVID-19 cases surge during holiday season in Belgium

Belgium’s health ministry reported on over 50% increase in new COVID-19 infections after Christmas, Andalou Agency News has learned.

Christmas holiday i Belgium was marked by the surging of the coronavirus cases. New infections rose by 52% sice December 24,  according to the latest figures released by the Public Health Institute Sciensano.

An average of 10,126 new infections were detected every day between Dec. 24-30 — 52% more compared to the previous week’s average, Sciensano revealed on Monday.

On Thursday, health authorities recorded a peak of 15,999 daily infections, according to the data. During this period, 72,364 people tested positive out of the total 456,826 examined, indicating a 15.84% positivity rate.

The numbers suggested that the epidemiological situation has turned from the slow-down trend experienced before Christmas and that the EU country may enter soon the fifth wave of the pandemic.

As the Belgium government’s coronavirus spokesperson Yves Van Laethem confirmed on Friday, over 70% of the new COVID-19 cases are related to the new omicron strain.

Brussels is expected this week to introduce new quarantine requirements for people returning to Belgium to stop the spread of the new and more contagious infection.