BRUSSELS, Oct. 28 (Xinhua) — The Belgian health institute Sciensano released Wednesday the COVID-19 death figure of 104 recorded on Monday, the highest daily number since the start of the second wave.

The last time the daily 100-mark was surpassed was on April 29, when Belgium recorded 107 deaths.

Over the last 7 days from Oct. 18 to Oct.24, an average of 59.1 deaths was confirmed. To date, there have been a total of 11,038 COVID-related deaths since the beginning of the epidemic, Sciensano noted on Wednesday.

The epidemiological situation in Belgium is very critical, said Yves Van Laethem, inter-federal spokesman for the fight against COVID-19, citing other indicators of COVID-19 “which remain in the red and will continue to increase for more days.”

A total of 689 hospitalizations were recorded on Tuesday, more than the peak of 629 during the first wave of the pandemic.

In the seven days to Oct. 27, the daily average of hospitalizations is 547.3. At present, 5,554 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized, 911 of them in intensive care.

During the seven-day period of Oct. 18-24, an average of 13,858 daily cases was reported. So far Belgium has recorded a tally of 347,289 cases.

“The only way to stabilize the spike in hospital admissions is to implement the measures taken at the federal level,” Laethem insisted.

“The best way to show solidarity is not to applaud health care workers, but to implement health measures, so that they are not overburdened for too long in primary care as well as in intra-hospital care,” he added.

As the world is caught in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, countries including France, Germany, China, Russia, Britain and the United States are racing to find a vaccine.

According to the website of the World Health Organization, as of Oct. 19, there were 198 COVID-19 candidate vaccines being developed worldwide, and 44 of them were in clinical trials. Enditem