None of Luxembourg's critically ill had taken vaccine
The vast majority of people in hospital with Covid-19 last week had received no vaccination against the deadly disease, the health ministry said on Wednesday, as the government seeks to convince the hundreds of thousands of people who have not yet taken the jab to change their mind.
None of the 10 patients in intensive care last week had been vaccinated, and only 14% of the 29 people in general wards, the data showed. The average age of those needing hospital treatment dropped to 47 years from 60.
Vaccinated people can still catch the virus and transmit it to others and figures from last week show that of the 533 new infections, just over a third had been fully vaccinated. The number of people testing positive fell by four percent compared to the previous week.
From Wednesday onwards, Luxembourg will no longer provide free corona tests – a measure Prime Minister Xavier Bettel put in place in a bid to encourage more people to take the vaccine. The country can “no longer justify that the general public pays for PCR [tests] for people who do not want to get vaccinated", Bettel said at a press conference earlier this month.
Luxembourg's Consultative Commission on Human Rights (CCDH) criticised the new rules, saying it feared that taking away free PCR tests would discriminate against people that cannot get a vaccine for medical reasons. But Luxembourg City said on Wednesday that it would prolong its distribution of vouchers for rapid antigen tests at no cost until 18 October.
Luxembourg has now administered more than 775,000 doses of the vaccine, meaning that nearly 400,000 people are fully vaccinated out of a total population of just over 613,000.
At the start of the month, the reproduction rate of the coronavirus fell slightly from 1.04 to 1, meaning that each infected person on average infected one other person they came in contact with. The incidence rate, which shows how quickly the disease spreads, was at its highest among children up to 14 years old and the lowest incidence rate was among people aged 75 years and over.
A third of the 533 people who caught the disease became infected by a family member and 20% after travelling abroad, the ministry said. A total of 102 people tested positive for the virus on Tuesday. The country’s death toll stands at 834.