The Hospital Audit Service, which is a collaboration between the National Institute for Health and Disability Insurance (RIZIV-INAMI), the FPS Public Health and the Federal Agency for Medicines and Health Products (FAGG-AFMPS) has published a report on the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on hospital care.
The report presents estimates for the delays in Belgian hospital care between March 2020 and May 2021, as well as predictions for the time needed to overcome these delays. Analyses are performed for different surgical interventions, internal medicine health care and psychiatric health care.
Overall, delays in hospital care are observed in Wave 1, Wave 2 and Wave 3, with a peak in March 2021. Hospital care recovered somewhat during the interwave periods, as well as in Wave 3. However, the delays in essential and mixed surgical interventions are predicted to hinder hospital health care for another 1.2 years. For non-essential care, the "catching-up period" is estimated to be 4.6 years.