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Dutch COVID-19 patients transferred to Germany as hospitals struggle

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By Reuters
Netherlands to impose new COVID measures to avoid healthcare breakdown
Netherlands to impose new COVID measures to avoid healthcare breakdown   -   Copyright  Thomson Reuters 2021   -  

<div> <p><span class="caps">AMSTERDAM</span> – The Netherlands started transporting <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 patients across the border to Germany on Tuesday to ease pressure on Dutch hospitals, which are scaling back regular care to deal with a surge in coronavirus cases.</p> <p>A patient was transferred by ambulance from Rotterdam to a hospital in Bochum, some 240 km (150 miles) east, on Tuesday morning, and another would follow later in the day, health authorities said.</p> <p>The number of <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 patients in Dutch hospitals has swelled to its highest level since May in recent weeks and is expected to increase further as infections jump to record levels.</p> <p>As of Monday, 470 of a total 1,050 intensive care beds in the Netherlands were being used for <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19 patients. Hospitals were already scaling back other procedures including cancer treatments and heart operations https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/facing-new-covid-wave-dutch-delay-care-cancer-heart-patients-2021-11-19, to make room.</p> <p>The Dutch health authority (<span class="caps">NZA</span>) on Tuesday said almost a third of all operating theatres in the Netherlands had been closed to limit the use of intensive care beds.</p> <p>Deadlines for critical operations can’t be met in about a fifth of all Dutch hospitals, the <span class="caps">NZA</span> said, while various types of care had been scrapped in 49 of the country’s 73 hospitals.</p> <p>German hospitals in total have offered 20 beds for patients from the Netherlands, after treating dozens during previous waves of the pandemic.</p> <p>Plans by the Dutch government to impose further curbs to contain the virus prompted three nights of rioting https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/dutch-pm-lashes-out-idiots-after-third-night-violence-2021-11-22 starting on Friday and more than 170 arrests in cities cross the country.</p> <p>Plans include limiting access to many public places to people who have been vaccinated or have recently recovered from <span class="caps">COVID</span>-19. It remains unclear whether the government will find a majority to enact the rules into law.</p> <p/> </div>