New measures to stop spread of coronavirus in the Netherlands

Please note: this news item was published on March 12. Read more about the current approach to tackling coronavirus in the Netherlands.

From Thursday 12 March 2020 new measures apply in the Netherlands to stop the spread of coronavirus. Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Minister for Medical Care Bruno Bruins announced the measures at a press conference. The measures are based on the advice of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).

  • For everyone in the Netherlands: stay at home if you have a cold, a cough, a sore throat or a fever. Avoid contact with others (social distancing). Only call your doctor if your symptoms worsen.
  • Gatherings of more than 100 people are to be cancelled throughout the Netherlands. This includes the closure of public places such as museums, concert venues, theatres, sports clubs and the cancellation of sports matches and other events.
  • People throughout the Netherlands are encouraged to work from home or stagger their working times if possible.
  • For vulnerable people (the elderly and those with weakened immune systems): avoid large gatherings and public transport. People in general are urged to limit visits to vulnerable persons.
  • For healthcare workers and staff in other crucial sectors: a lot is being asked of you. You should stay at home only if you have symptoms including a fever. If necessary, consult with your employer. Please do not travel abroad.
  • Universities and institutions of higher professional education (HBO) are requested to offer online lectures instead of large-scale lectures.
  • Primary schools, secondary schools, secondary vocational schools (MBO) and childcare centres will remain open as usual. There have been only few infections there and these environments are less international. Children and young people are not high-risk groups. Closing schools would have a major impact on society without contributing significantly to reducing the spread of coronavirus. Children who have symptoms of a cold should stay at home.

Important: these measures apply until 31 March 2020 (inclusive) throughout the Netherlands, including in North Brabant.

From Thursday 12 March onwards new information will be added here. The questions and answers on will also be updated.

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Measures to stop spread of coronavirus