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Netherlands says goodbye to last Covid rules

More than two years after the outbreak of the coronavirus in the Netherlands, the last of the society-affecting rules to curb its spread come to an end on Wednesday.

People who want to go to a large event or nightclub no longer have to get tested beforehand. Face masks are no longer mandatory in public transport. And the advice to work from home is scrapped.

People who enter the Netherlands from other EU countries no longer need to show that they have been vaccinated against, recently recovered from, or tested negative for Covid-19. This also applies to countries that are not part of the EU but belong to the Schengen area of open borders – Norway, Switzerland, Iceland, and Liechtenstein.

The Cabinet relaxed the coronavirus measures because the Omicron variant dominant in recent months usually makes people less ill than previous variants. The number of coronavirus patients in intensive care units is relatively stable and much lower than when the Delta variant was dominant.

The only measure that remains in force is that people who have symptoms should stay at home and get tested. According to the government, preventive testing is no longer necessary. People are also still advised to ventilate indoor spaces well, get vaccinated and boosted against the coronavirus, wash their hands regularly, and cough and sneeze into their elbow, not their hands.

In general, the government asked people to take account of each other and keep their distance if someone asked them to, for example.

Reporting by ANP.

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Ankita Deshkar

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