It is not a good idea to allow infected young people who were in Spain with travel agencies Summer Bash and Youth Travel to return to their families. This is what professor of general medicine Dirk Devroey said on Radio 2. He pleads in favor of their maintenance.
Two buses from the travel organization Youth Travel with 122 infected young people, mostly minors, on board arrived in Belgium on Friday afternoon from the Spanish party destinations Lloret de Mar and Calella. Most of them went to Ghent, another part went to Kontich. According to Youth Travel, the trip went well and no young people are seriously ill.
All young people must now all be isolated for ten days. Family members who pick up the infected youngster by definition become high-risk contacts. They should therefore also be quarantined and tested. This also applies to bus drivers who transport young people.
The risk of young people infecting family members is high. So general medicine professor Dirk Devroey doesn’t think it’s a good idea to quarantine his home.
“As soon as these young people arrive in our country, you cannot just let them go to their families,” he said on Radio 2. “We know that most infections occur within a family, so we’re not going to let them kids go home. “Parents? That way you’re creating one of the biggest sources of contamination there is.”
Where better to go then? Keep them together, says Devroey. “In fact, they should go to some sort of camp for two weeks, all quarantined together and wait there until they are sure they are no longer infected. That way we can prevent 110 people, many of whom are probably super spreaders, from infecting a lot of other people.
Don’t go down to France
Youth travel buses have been ready in Spain since Wednesday. Taking care of the necessary formalities turned out to be a real job. “We needed the authorization of the French authorities to cross their territory with people tested positively”, explains Katrien Corens, company director. They received this authorization Thursday afternoon, shortly before departure.
There were certain conditions. Young people were not allowed to go out and were not allowed to sit near the drivers. They should also wash their hands regularly and it is not possible to get out of the toilet for a visit. Once in Belgium, they were allowed to take to the air.
Negative tested travelers who are in Spain with Youth Travel will return on Saturday with Brussels Airlines. Summer Bash is hoping that three buses can return home on Friday, carrying the young people who have tested negative.
The young people will be tested again before the start, but as the organization does self-tests and no official tests, the young people will be tested again at UZ Gent when they arrive in our country, confirmed Moonens. Buses will stop at UZ Gent on Saturday morning. Young people who then test positive should be isolated. Anyone who tests negative should be quarantined because they have had high-risk contact.
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