Pressure on hospitals But there was relief among hospital staff, who learned to their dismay last week that the government wanted to ease restrictions at a time when nearly three-quarters of intensive care beds are occupied by patients with the coronavirus. Sunday, 8 288 new infections were announced, the highest daily number in two weeks, while more than 2 500 people are being treated in hospitals for the virus, 788 of whom are in intensive care. Ad Melkert, president of the Dutch hospital association NVZ, said, "It is difficult for people who hoped for or counted on the easing of restrictions. But they are still badly needed, because in our hospitals everyone is on deck." "First we need to get the virus under control, get more people vaccinated and reduce the pressure on the hospitals. Then we can slowly but surely get back to normal, but I think that will take a few more weeks."