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- 1.7 Public Health
- 49.9 Financial
- 88 Fact-Based
The Netherlands’ overall policy is now near the median, a significant improvement from January, driven by a stronger financial response despite its low testing levels and limited lockdown.
The Netherlands scored extremely well on most categories, except for hospital beds.
- Debt/GDP ratio 52.4%
- GDP/capita $60,299
- Gini coefficient (out of 100) 28.5
- Infant mortality rate (out of 1,000 live births) 3
- Healthcare access score (out of 100) 89.5
- Hospital beds/1,000 People 33.6
Government ResponseSelect a data point for more information
(Data points represent policy level as of Mar 15.)
Public Health Directives
The Netherlands’ extremely poor public health policy score was greatly impacted by the country’s limited stay-at-home policy and travel restrictions, minimal testing, and few emergency healthcare funds.
- Stay at home order 2
- Public gathering restrictions 4
- School closings 2
- Public event cancellations 2
- Testing policy 2
- Emergency healthcare investments/capita $15.66
- Travel restrictions 3
- Tests/1,000 people 419.3
- Contact tracing 1
The Netherlands has a financial score near the median, driven by generous income support and debt forebearance, despite a small stimulus package.
- Financial stimulus as share of GDP 16.7%
- Income support 2
- Debt forebearance 1
The Netherlands’ government is strong in this category, as it has not limited press freedom in response to COVID-19, although leaders argued early on that there was no evidence for facemask effectiveness.
- Reliance on science/fact based information 1
- Press freedom 0
COVID-19 Status as of Mar 15
The Netherlands has a relatively strong score for country status, driven by its very low and substantially improved case rate.
- Total deaths 5,628
- Death rate per 100K 328.5
- Total cases 1,178,501
- Cases per 100K 33
- Percent of positive tests 7.4
- Change in positivity rates -6.2
|1||May 11||Childcare, primary schools, and some businesses are allowed to open||9.40|
|2||Jun 01||More businesses (including restaurants, cafes, and cultural institutions) reopen||6.07|
|3||Jul 01||More than 100 people are allowed in closed spaces; numbers at cinemas are not limited; and the travel ban from 14 EU countries is lifted||3.62|
|4||Aug 06||Begin compulsory COVID-19 testing at Schiphol airport and mandatory temporary closing of entertainment businesses experiencing an outbreak||41.73|
|5||Aug 18||Reinstate recommendation to work from home if possible, and to limit households to have no more than 6 people||33.85|
|6||Sep 28||Restaurants and bars must close by 10pm, outdoor gathering limit of 40 people, sporting events closed to the public, social gatherings in homes limited to 3 people||172.16|
|7||Oct 14||New partial lockdown: no more than 3 visitors per day in home, indoor and outdoor groups can't have more than 4 people from different households, all restaurants/bars closed (takout still allowed), retail stores close by 8pm, no alcohol sold after 8pm (and cannot have it in public in this time), coffee shops close by 8pm and only provide takeout, most events banned||429.01|
|8||Nov 04||Closed museums, theaters, cinemas, parks; limited gatherings from having more than 2 people from different households||448.21|
|9||Dec 01||Some of the stricter measures lifted, but lockdown still in place||245.06|
|10||Dec 15||Non-essential businesses, most schools, daycares, and many public spaces, including parks and zoos, were ordered to close thru mid-January||391.95|
|11||Mar 03||Relaxed some restrictions, including reopening secondary schools and some contact-based businesses, including hairdressing salons||294.14|
- Appeals court rules Dutch curfew legal: After a lower court ruled that the government of the Netherlands had overstepped its power in ordering a recent lockdown, an appeals court ruled in favor of the government, allowing the curfew to continue, although the conflicted rulings created confusion. Read More
- Riots and torching testing center over curfew: Riots broke out over three days in several Dutch cities over the new curfew to help control the spread of COVID-19, with a testing center in a small town burned to the ground. Read More
- UK variant driving case uptick: After weeks of decline, COVID-19 cases have been rising throughout the Netherlands, largely driven by the spread of the U.K. variant of the virus. Read More
- Dutch last EU country to start vaccinations: Two weeks later than all other EU countries, the Netherlands started vaccinations for COVID-19, focusing on nursing home staff and front-line workers in hospitals first. Read More
- Government reverses course and supports masks: After a rise in cases, the Dutch government reversed its earlier views and recommended the use of facemasks in public places. Read More
- High public trust saw success despite few restrictions: The Dutch government did not impose a strict lockdown, keeping shops and the country's borders open. Instead, the authorities have relied on self-regulation, which appears to have worked. One survey found that 93 percent of respondents were choosing to stay home as much as possible and practicing social distancing. Read More
- Income support contingent on staff retention: In early July, the government launched a second round of business support, reimbursing up to 90 percent of salary costs on the condition that businesses fire no more than 20 people and provide training and retraining opportunities to employees where possible. Read More
Compared with Neighboring/Nearest Countries
Per 1M 2,979
Belgium has a relative strong score, with its generous income support and strong testing and contact tracing countered by limited public health directives.
Per 1M 10,229
Germany has improved its score a bit in the past few months, after a sharp decline in the fall. Its improvements in contact tracing, which are already likely underestimated in the data, and restrictions on public gatherings, have played important roles in this turnaround, although there has been a recent spike in cases, likely due to both recent restriction relaxations and vaccine rollout issues.
Further Reading From Foreign Policy
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Statistics and government response factors available on each country profile include:
- Debt to GDP ratio
- Infant mortality rates
- Hospital beds per 1,000 people
- Gini coefficients measuring inequality
- Health access and quality
COVID-19 Public Health Directives:
- Stay-at home orders
- School-closing policy
- Public-gathering restrictions
- Cancellation of public events
- Testing policy and rates per 1,000 people
- Emergency healthcare spending per capita
- Travel restrictions
- Contact tracing
COVID-19 Financial Response:
- Stimulus package as a share of GDP
- Income support
- Instances of misinformation by leadership
- Limitations on press freedom, censorship
Current/Historic In-Country COVID-19 Status:
- Death rates per 1 million
- Case rates per 1 million