Large majority of patients in hospital did not get jab
Two-thirds of all those admitted to Luxembourg hospitals last week had not been vaccinated against Covid-19 as new infections fell for a sixth consecutive week, the health ministry said on Wednesday.
There were 27 people in hospital on Wednesday, of which five were in intensive care, the ministry said. Fourteen people were admitted to hospitals in the week ending on Sunday, down from 16 the previous week. Six people had to be admitted to an intensive care unit in Luxembourg - the same number as the week before.
Over 80% of those in intensive care last week were not vaccinated, the health ministry added, a sign that vaccines significantly reduce the risk of severe illness after a coronavirus infection. Two-thirds of those in regular care last week had chosen not to get the jab, the ministry added.
Those numbers were roughly in line with those of unvaccinated people who caught the virus last week. Out of 295 people who tested positive for coronavirus, 76% had not gotten the jab, the ministry said.
Although the government is trying to get more people vaccinated by making it available in general practitioner practices and at big-crowd gatherings, the number of Covid-19 vaccines administered slowed for the fourth strait week. Just over 13,000 people opted for a vaccine, 9,000 fewer than the week before, the ministry said. The newly vaccinated amounted to about a quarter of the peak in June, when Luxembourg administered 50,000 vaccines in one week.
The number of unvaccinated people catching Covid has also started a debate about whether companies can require new employees to be vaccinated. Last week, Health Minister Paulette Lenert signalled her support for that idea, saying that "it is sensible to do this in hospitals." Luxembourg's CHL hospital chain last week announced it would only hire new employees that have received the vaccine - one of the first medical institutions to do so.
Last week, there were 632 active infections in the Grand Duchy, the ministry said, down from 783. Following National Day on 23rd June, infections in the country skyrocketed to over a 1,000 after party-goers came down with the disease.
As a result, Luxembourg chose not to remove any more public health measures such as limits on public and private gatherings and mask mandates. The current law authorising Covid-fighting restrictions is set to expire on 15 September, ahead of the new school term. The government is expected to announce its plans to renew or revise the law before that deadline.