In mid-March 2020, when it was confirmed that the influx of patients with COVID-19 into hospitals was increasing exponentially, the HTSC Committee (see Organisation section) took action by issuing national guidelines to general and university hospitals at regular intervals.
The general and university hospitals were called upon to show solidarity and take responsibility by adopting the necessary measures to treat a maximum number of patients with COVID-19 according to their capacity and expertise. The hospitals were also asked to make arrangements within their networks to work together to deal with the influx of patients.
A daily overview of the number of admission was needed in order to effectively monitor the situation in the Belgian hospitals. The hospitals registered the admission data and the free capacity via the Sciensano apps and via the Incident & Crisis Management System safety website respectively. On this basis, visual, dynamic dashboards were created to support the policy decisions.