Netherlands in new lockdown until at least 19 January
The government's aim with this lockdown is to limit contact between people as much as possible.
"That has an impact on healthcare in general; more than one million routine hospital procedures have had to be postponed. Unfortunately, it is not always possible to trace the source of an infection. This is why the Netherlands will go into its strictest lockdown yet from 15 December until at least Tuesday 19 January," government of the Netherlands says.
Venues such as museums, theatres, amusement parks, zoos, casinos, saunas, indoor sporting venues, and establishments serving food and drink (including in hotels) will be closed throughout this period. Shops such as clothing stores, shoe shops, jewellery shops and shops selling craft supplies will also be closed. The government's aim in this regard is to limit contact between people as much as possible.
Supermarkets, bakeries, butchers and other shops where food is sold can remain open, as can establishments such as pharmacies, chemists and petrol stations. People working in non-medical contact-based professions, including hairdressers, nail stylists and tattooists, cannot carry out their work. Only people in medical and paramedical contact-based professions can continue to carry out their work.
Primary and secondary schools, schools for secondary vocation education (MBO) and higher education institutions (universities and HBO) will deliver teaching online in order to reduce in-person contact. They may make exceptions for those sitting exams and interim exams this academic year, as well as for practical training and to support vulnerable pupils and students.
Childcare centres will also be closed. Primary schools and childcare centres will remain open for children whose parents work in critical sectors. In order to allow enough time to make preparations, the measures for schools, educational institutions and childcare centres will apply from Wednesday 16 December. They will be in place until Sunday 17 January. ■