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RIVM – 200 thousand people tested positive in one week

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201,536 positive COVID-19 tests were reported to RIVM last week*.

That is an increase of 77% compared to the previous week. Such high numbers of reported infections within just one week have never been seen before in the Netherlands.

The virus spreads through contact between people. The Omicron variant is known to spread faster than the previous variants of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. As a result, the number of reported positive COVID-19 tests last week rose to 201,356. Reported figures are rising in all regions of the Netherlands.

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The highest number of reported positive tests per 100,000 inhabitants last week were in the age group of 18-29 years. The highest absolute number of infections and the highest number of infections per 100,000 inhabitants was in the age group of 18-24 years.

The number of reported positive tests per 100,000 inhabitants among people aged 18-24 years tripled last week compared to the previous week. Among people aged 13-17 years and people aged 25-29 years, the number of reported positive tests per 100,000 inhabitants doubled within a week.

Hardly any increase has been observed in reported figures for people over 60 .


The number of reinfections – defined as people who are infected with SARS-CoV-2 again two months or more after their previous infection – is rising sharply.

From early summer to mid-December 2021, about 3% of reported positive tests involved a reinfection. With the increase in cases involving the Omicron variant, the percentage of reinfections is rising sharply.

In week 51 of 2021, 5% of cases involved a reinfection, rising to 8% a week later. In the first week of this year (3 to 9 January 2022), this percentage continued to increase, rising to 13%. 


The number of patients with COVID-19 admitted to hospital and ICU is decreasing. This is in line with the fact that relatively few older people have tested positive in recent weeks; these people have a higher risk of hospitalisation.

During the past week (3-9 January), 873 people were admitted to hospital nursing wards (1,046 in the previous week) and 143 people were admitted to ICU (171 in the previous week). People who are currently admitted to hospital with COVID-19 could have the Delta variant or the Omicron variant. How the increase in reported positive tests due to the Omicron variant will influence the number of new hospital admissions will become apparent in the next few weeks.

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    Ankita Deshkar

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