► The health check of the day: on Monday May 18, 232 new cases were reported. 50 new hospitalizations have been recorded in the last 24 hours. A total of 345 patients are in intensive care, an increase of 3 patients in the past 24 hours. A total of 9,108 deaths were reported, an increase of 29 deaths compared to the previous day’s results.
► Summer will not stop the epidemic. Statistical studies, carried out in recent months, despite little progress on the new coronavirus, have established a slight correlation between the climate and the epidemic: the warmer and more humid it is, the less the virus will spread. However, these calculations remain preliminary and the biological link between climate and Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, is fundamentally ignored. The models, published Monday by researchers at Princeton University in the journal Science, do not contradict the correlation, but consider it negligible for the time being.
► In Tuesday’s L’Echo, PS President Paul Magnette called for a plan to quickly revive the economy. His interview can be read here.
► If more people could be tested for coronavirus, infected patients might be more likely to provide the names of the people they came in contact with, considers the virologist Emmanuel André in De Morgen and De Standaard. He pleads for an extension of the test criteria.
► Belgium’s gross domestic product (GDP) is likely to fall from 7.81% to 11.22% in 2020, depending on the recovery scenario which will be confirmed, according to estimates by economist Eric Dor, director of economic studies at the IESEG School of Management, in France.
► Ecolo offers a tax credit to half compensate for unpaid commercial rents.
► The European car market fell 76.3% in April.
► The General Central of Liberal Unions of Belgium (CGSLB) has filed notice of an indefinite strike in the health sector. The liberal union urgently demands a global plan providing for structural investments. The union denounces the absence of consultation with union representatives.
► The excess mortality caused by the coronavirus epidemic was greater in the Brussels-Capital Region, VUB (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) said on Tuesday on the basis of figures from the statistical office Statbel.
► In China, researchers claim to have already developed a treatment capable of stopping the epidemic. A drug in the testing phase at the prestigious Peking University (“Beida”) would not only accelerate the healing of patients, but also temporarily immunize against Covid-19.