29 January 2021: A grim outlook…
29 January 2021: More people testing positive, more hospitalizations and more fatalities is the summary of yesterday’s figures. In the week to 25 January on average 2,210 people tested positive each day. The figure is up 12% on the week. A report from the Belgian virologists pictures a grim outlook for the coming months. The experts state that the British mutation is 65% more contagious and warn that if no action is taken Belgium will reach a reproduction number of 1.65 in the coming months. That is the same figure we experienced during the peak of the second wave. The virologists concluded that today’s corona measures are insufficient to arrest the spread of the British variant. For them the challenge is how to convince people of the dangerous nature of the situation, while it is not yet visible. In turn politicians are saying that there isn’t much leeway for additional measures. They argue that there is the curfew, home-working and that foreign travel has been restricted and that therefore we should invest in getting people to comply with existing measures. They claim to focus on the mental health of the population and ensure that the economy doesn’t collapse. In the backdrop of these discussions the war for vaccines seems to become more and more imminent. The European commission now wants to ban the export of vaccines if their producers do not keep their promised deliveries to EU countries, which means that Belgium could block the export of Pfizer’s vaccine. The success of the vaccines has brought hope to the world to rid itself of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it clearly entails new challenges. Laurel and Hardy are watching how these discussions unroll with sadness and disbelief from behind the window of a closed bistro downtown Ghent, Belgium.
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Before: Healthcare Exec. Based in Brussels; Heidelberg; Los Altos Hills, CA; The Hague, Geneva, Nijmegen, Groningen
Now: Non-Executive Director in the Healthcare Industry based in Ghent. A travel buff with a passion for photography, photography books, Leica, wine and Asian food. Last but not least: proud grandfather of William and Nicholas