NL: Economic restrictions will go before Covid access pass, Health Min. says

THE HAGUE - Coronavirus measures that are "economically hindering" will be released earlier than the coronavirus access pass, said Health Minister Hugo de Jonge. "The coronavirus pass is highly annoying," the Minister acknowledged on talk show Op1.

The digital proof that allows people to access a restaurant or museum will last longer than other rules, such as the 75 percent maximum capacity limit for specific events and the midnight closing time for the catering sector. 

"The first thing you hope you can get rid of is that 75 percent and the night closure," said De Jonge. He did not want to anticipate whether the access pass would be used all winter and on other relaxations. At the beginning of November, the Cabinet will weigh the advice of the Outbreak Management Team (OMT) on this. At the end of last week, the Minister said that it is too early to answer the questions of which rules the Cabinet can relax. 

According to RTL Nieuws, the OMT advice is to not relax any further measures for the time being. The OMT also said that the prognoses of the coronavirus' development in autumn and winter are looking worse than previously modeled. According to the team of experts, there is "a greater degree of uncertainty, including a sharp increase in hospital and ICU admissions." If there are no further relaxations and the number of contacts between people remains the same, up to 400 people may end up in intensive care in the coming months. 


The OMT also advised making the recovery certificate for the coronavirus access pass valid for a year instead of the current six months. The coronavirus access pass, usually shown in the form of a QR code on the CoronaCheck app, shows that a person is vaccinated against Covid-19, recently recovered from an infection, or tested negative for the virus within the last 24 hours. This access pass is mandatory in catering establishments, the cultural and entertainment sectors, and for events. 

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