For most of the day, experts agreed that we had entered the fourth wave of Kovid-19 in Belgium. The main indicators of infection are increasing in all ages and in all parts of the country. But really, what’s the pressure on hospitals compared to the “classic” flu pandemic season, which usually peaks in February?
A new report by GEMS, a team of experts working to advise the federal government on the health crisis, has lifted the mask on the issue. This report, from our colleagues Last news Learned, it has its roots in the concern of experts to double the infection during the winter season.
To accurately predict what will happen ahead, they compile the stress numbers that the flu pandemic causes on our hospitals each year. Experts are focusing only on the two most severe flu seasons of the last decade. The mild influenza season in 2014 and the most severe in 2018. They collected statistics on infection rates, hospital admissions, and intensive care units for both seasons. Influenza affected. From there, they formed daily entry estimates at the peak of each wave.
In terms of infections, the fourth wave of coronavirus seems to be above average in what is currently called the “classic” flu season. In 2018, during the most severe flu wave, there were almost 11,000 infections per day in our country. During the mild season, that number increased to 2,800 per day. There are currently an average of 7,750 infections per day reported for coronavirus.
Admission to the hospital
With regard to hospitalization, the fourth wave of coronavirus is currently causing more admissions than the flu season averages. In 2014, hospitals received 52 new patients per day at the height of the epidemic, while in 2018 there were a maximum of 225. For coronavirus, this number is currently 164 admissions per day. This is three times higher than the mild flu season, but still less than the maximum for the most severe flu season.
Pay special attention
Finally, at the intensive care level, when the flu hit hard in 2018, 582 patients were admitted to intensive care. At the height of the wave, 11 new intensive care beds are filled every day. In 2014, when the flu was in its mildest season, 9 new patients were admitted to intensive care every day during peak hours. For the fourth wave of coronavirus, we have already exceeded these two values since last week, with 12 new patients joining intensive care every day. This means we are already at the top of the most severe peak of the flu season.
With an average of 7,750 daily infections and more than 150 hospitalizations per day, the fourth wave coronavirus is currently between the mildest and most severe flu season. However, in intensive care units, the pressure is already slightly higher during the most severe flu season of the last decade and the rate of increase in that pressure is significantly higher than the flu.
These figures highlight the role of vaccines as a “protective barrier” because during the second wave of coronavirus, at the same time last year, hospital admissions were significantly higher than the peak during the most severe flu season in ten years.