Marc Van Ranst: “This will be crucial, the most important Safe …


A new Security Council will be held on Monday at 9 am where corona measures may be tightened. The most important thing is to reduce the contact bubble, but there are also other actions on the table, as can be heard on Sunday evening from the relevant cabinets. This would be an intervention in our shopping behavior. “As far as I’m concerned, this has been the most important Security Council since March,” said virologist Marc Van Ranst.

Last weekend it was decided to bring the Security Council forward from Friday to Monday. After all, most virologists agreed after the previous meeting that the measures did not go far enough. Meanwhile, the curve goes up steeply every day. “Earlier than Monday was not possible,” says Van Ranst. “I wrote a report until last night.”

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According to health institute Sciensano, great attention should now be paid to enforcing the measures. “The sense of citizenship is developing positively, but there must also be clearer signals from the government,” says Professor Boudewijn Catry. Sciensano also warns against repeating errors from the first wave, such as the complete quarantine of residents of residential care centers. “And the measures must continue to co-exist,” says Catry. “Taking one measure shouldn’t be an alibi to scrap another.”


The main part of what is on the table on Monday is the reduction of the contact bubble, can be noted at various sources. “But we will not get there alone,” is one of the cabinets involved. So there are also other promotions on the table. For example, an intervention in the shops will be discussed. The number of contacts during shopping must decrease, possibly by calling on people to go to the store again. It would not be necessary to increase the number of square meters per customer.


In addition, there is talk of a new restriction on events and an extension of the mask obligation, can be heard from a political angle. Marc Van Ranst is certainly in favor of the Antwerp guideline to always have a mask in your pocket. “That’s a good point of view,” he says. “After all, you cannot always predict which part of the city you will be visiting.”

He does not find an obligation to keep the mask on anytime and anywhere. “It only contributes in busy places, the mayors are best placed to indicate where that is.”

According to Van Ranst, this is a decisive Security Council, the most important since March. “This is crucial. We will be there earlier than in the first wave, but we also want to stop it earlier. ” According to him, it should be possible to move the epidemic in a different direction within four weeks. “We want to have this under control by 1 September, so that we can have a normal start-up of the schools.”

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