The number of newly reported COVID-19 infections decreased slightly last week compared to the week before that. Reproduction number R is still entirely above 1. The number of new hospital admissions has increased somewhat.

64,087 new COVID-19 cases* were reported last week, 3,455 (-5%) less than the week before. The lower number of reported infections was observed particularly in the last few days. This seems to be the effect of the measures that were implemented at the end of September and in mid-October. The number of contagious people remains high, reaching 166,000 this week.

No decrease in the number of people who tested positive for COVID-19 has been observed yet in the age categories over 60 years old. The difference between the number of newly reported infections in younger and older age categories grew smaller again this week.


Figure 1: Number of confirmed cases per 100,000 inhabitants, by age group, from 21 Sep to 1 Nov.

Differences between the regions

In 16 of the 25 regions of the Municipal Public Health Services (GGDs), the number of reported positive COVID-19 tests decreased. The largest decrease in the number of newly reported infections can be seen in the regions of Amsterdam-Amstelland and Hollands-Midden; compared to two weeks ago, newly reported infections have decreased by at least 20%. The regions with the highest number of reported infections per 100,000 inhabitants were Rotterdam-Rijnmond, Zuid-Holland-Zuid and Midden- en West-Brabant; these regions had over 500 reported infections per 100,000 inhabitants.

*Commercial providers of validated tests (antigen tests) are also reporting positive test results to the Municipal Public Health Services (GGDs).  The Health and Youth Care Inspectorate is overseeing that reporting process. It is possible that not all positive test results from commercial test providers have been reported yet.

GGD test lanes and percentage of positive tests

In the week of 26 October to 1 November, 295,147* people were tested in the GGD test lanes, over 26,500 people more than in the week before. The test results for 292,613 people are known. 48,495 of those people tested positive for COVID-19. The percentage of positive tests is still high (16.6%), but has decreased compared to the previous week for the first time since July.

The percentage of positive tests decreased in nearly all regions. However, there are major differences between the regions. The regions with the lowest percentage of positive tests were Groningen, Fryslân and Drenthe (<10%), while the regions with the highest percentages were Rotterdam-Rijnmond and Zuid-Holland-Zuid (>20%).

*Source: GGD GHOR 

kaart incidentie meldingen percentage positief veiligheidsregio

Figure 2: Left: the number of positive COVID-19 tests reported by the GGD per security region last week (28 October-3 November). Right: the percentage (%) of positive tests in the GGD test lanes per security region in the past calendar week (the maps for the previous week can be viewed here.

Hospital admissions increased, and more deaths were reported

In the past week, the NICE Foundation recorded 1,966 people who were admitted to nursing wards due to COVID-19, which is 227 more new admissions than in the week before (+13%). 312 number of admissions to Intensive Care were recorded this week, slightly fewer than in the week before, when 333 new ICU admissions were recorded (-3.5%).

Mortality continues to increase

Continuing the trend of the previous weeks, Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reported a higher mortality rate than expected in the week of 19 to 25 October. There were nearly 600 more deaths than expected for that week. RIVM also keeps track of mortality figures on a weekly basis. In the most recent RIVMNational Institute for Public Health and the Environment data for 15-21 October, mortality was slightly elevated in the age category of 55-64 years, elevated in the age category of 65-74 years, and significantly elevated in the age category of 75 years and older.

Reproduction number R

The reproduction number for 16 October* is 1.15 (lower limit: 1.09, upper limit: 1.13). This is slightly lower than a few weeks ago, and the confidence interval is still entirely above 1. A reproduction number of 1.11 means that 100 people with COVID-19 will collectively infect another 111 people with the virus.

*The estimates for R from longer than 14 days ago are reliable. An estimated R based on data from less than 14 days ago involves more uncertainties. That is why we always look at the R from 14 days ago.

Number of contagious people in the Netherlands

The number of contagious people is now over 166,000 (with a lower limit of 120,000 and an upper limit of over 210,000).

Slow down the virus? Prevent the spread? Follow the basic measures!

It continues to be important to always get tested if you have mild symptoms that could indicate COVID-19 – even if you think it might just be a common cold.

To prevent the virus from continuing to spread, it is important for everyone to comply with the measures and the basic rules. Stay at least 1.5 metres from others. Work from home. If you have symptoms, stay home and get tested. Wash your hands frequently, especially when you arrive at home. Sneeze and cough into your elbow. 

Daily figures

RIVM publishes a weekly overview of the number of infections, hospital admissions and ICU admissions, and people who have died from the consequences of COVID-19. Daily figures (which are corrected for later updates in some media, and not in others) may fluctuate dramatically as delayed reports come in, and are therefore less suitable for monitoring the course of the epidemic.

  Last week1 Two weeks ago2
COVID-19 reports by Municipal Public Health Services (GGDs)    
Newly reported COVID-19 infections 64,087 67,542
Number of hospital admissions to nursing wards (Source: NICE) 1966 1739
Number of hospital admissions to Intensive Care (Source: NICE) 321 333
Deaths 435 329
GGD test lanes per calendar week3 week 44 week 43
Total number of tests of which results are known 292,613 321,379
Number of people who tested positive 48,495 59,091
Percentage of positive tests 16,6% 18,4%

Not all of the reported hospital admissions or deaths occurred within the last 24 hours

¹GGD reports to RIVMNational Institute for Public Health and the Environment between 27 October 10:01 and 3 November 10:00 as published 3 November 2020 in the weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 in the Netherlands.
²GGD reports to RIVM between 20 October 10:01 and 27 October 10:00, as published 27 October 2020 in the weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 in the Netherlands.
³As published on 3 November 2020 in the weekly epidemiological update on COVID-19 in the Netherlands. The figures from the GGD test lanes were reported during the past week and current week, and may be updated to include any test results provided later.