AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - The mortality rate in the Netherlands was lower than average last week, the statistics office said, as deaths in the country from the coronavirus decline.

Statistics Netherlands said there were 2,850 deaths in the week ending May 17, about 200 fewer than would be expected at this time of year. That follows weeks of higher death rates attributed to the pandemic.

The National Institute for Health has reported 5,775 confirmed deaths from COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus, with a peak at the start of April.

(Reporting by Toby Sterling; Editing by Catherine Evans)

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