Geert Molenberghs: “Very severe measures such as a lockdown…

Geert Molenberghs: “Very severe measures such as a lockdown…

©  Guy Puttemans

Biostatistician Geert Molenberghs (UHasselt/KU Leuven) believes that no new major measures such as lockdowns will follow in our country, even now that the number of corona infections is rising again. “We must remain cautious, but if we can maintain this level of vaccination rate and carry out proper controls on travel, we can make further gains,” Molenberghs said Monday after the Consultation Committee concluded.


Yesterday at 6:49 PM

Molenberghs reacts cautiously positively to the press conference of the Consultation Committee. “It is good that it has been decided not to open everything on September 1. Belgium is generally doing well. If people remain cautious, including with regard to the number of social contacts and travel, we can continue with this momentum.”

Molenberghs is critical of the governments in connection with the extra checks that will be introduced for travelers. “It has been announced several times that stricter controls would be introduced, but it remains a pain point. I give the Consultation Committee the benefit of the doubt, but it is first seeing and then believing.”

Pukkelpop too early

However, the biostatistician thinks it is still too early for mass events such as Pukkelpop. Pukkelpop takes place from 19 to 22 August, and can therefore use the Covid Safe Ticket. Wearing face masks and keeping a distance may be dispensed with if people can demonstrate that they are either fully vaccinated or have passed a negative PCR test of a maximum of 48 hours old.

“Such events are not yet on the agenda, I remain concerned about that,” says Molenberghs. “The PCR tests may have leaks. If someone at Pukkelpop is positive, and that person infects someone who has tested negative but has not yet been vaccinated, the ball can start rolling again. When people are vaccinated, they are also less likely to become infected, and they are also better protected against false negative people. It is therefore better to wait with mass gatherings until the vast majority of the population has been fully vaccinated.”


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