Pressure on hospitals But there was relief among hospital staff, who learned to their dismay last week that the government wanted to ease restrictions while nearly three-quarters of intensive care beds are occupied by coronavirus patients. On Sunday, another 8 288 infections were announced, the highest daily number in two weeks, while more than 2 500 people are being treated in hospital for the virus, 788 of them in intensive care. Ad Melkert, general director of the Dutch association of hospitals NVZ, said, "This is difficult for people who hoped or expected that the restrictions would be eased. But they are still urgently needed because our hospitals have their hands full. First we need to get the virus under control, vaccinate more people and relieve the pressure on the hospitals. Then we can slowly but surely get back to normal, but I think that will take a few weeks.'