Dutch minister for medical care collapses during coronavirus debate

THE HAGUE (Reuters) - The Dutch minister for medical care collapsed briefly on Wednesday during a debate in parliament on the coronavirus because of what he called exhaustion from weeks of intense work.

Bruno Bruins, 56, fell behind the speaker’s lectern while taking questions and was helped up by fellow ministers. He took a sip of water and was seen leaving the room unassisted.

“I was feeling faint from fatigue and intense weeks. I am feeling better now. I am going home now to rest this evening so I can return tomorrow to fight the corona crisis,” he said in a message on social media.

Bruins is the top government health official in the Netherlands, where the number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus rose by 346 on Wednesday to 2,051, with 58 deaths, the country’s National Institute for Health (RIVM) said.

Reporting by Stephanie van den Berg and Anthony Deutsch; Editing by Chris Reese and Peter Cooney