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HEALTH

Germany sees more than 1,000 new coronavirus infections in a day

For the first time in three months, Germany has registered more than 1,000 confirmed coronavirus infections in 24 hours.

Germany sees more than 1,000 new coronavirus infections in a day
Photo: DPA

A total of 1,045 confirmed cases of Covid-19 were recorded in Germany by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) within a day, the disease control agency said on Thursday August 6th.

The last time the number of new infections rose above 1,000 was on May 7th. The numbers steadily fell after that. However, in the past week the rate has been rising.

The peak of new infections came at the beginning of April when Germany saw more than 6,000 new cases in a day.

READ ALSO: 'Target clusters and superspreaders': Here's how Germany could prevent a second coronavirus wave

Where are the new cases?

In contrast to mid-June, when increases could be traced back to individual hotspots like large coronavirus outbreak at the Tönnies slaughterhouse in North Rhine-Westphalia, the current spike is not mainly due to particular clusters.

Instead the figures are rising across many districts and this effect adds up. Experts fear this kind of development because it can't be contained with a handful of strong measures.

RKI President Lothar Wieler said last week that the rise in cases was of “great concern” to him.

“It's in our hands how the pandemic evolves in Germany,” Wieler said, calling on Germans to stick with prevention measures such as washing hands and keeping a safe distance.

Experts are continually warning about a second wave of coronavirus sweeping through Germany.

However, opinions differ as to whether this wave is already here – and whether the best way to describe the situation is in “waves”.

READ ALSO: The second coronavirus wave has already hit Germany, doctors warn

This week children went back to school in some states and authorities are watching closely how this affects infection rates.

On Thursday, almost 240,000 school kids in Hamburg started school again. Pupils in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania returned from their summer holidays on Monday. Schleswig-Holstein, Berlin, Brandenburg and North Rhine-Westphalia will follow next week.

How many people have contracted Covid-19 in Germany?

According to the RKI, at least 213,067 people in Germany are confirmed to have picked up the Sars-CoV-2 virus since the beginning of the pandemic (data status as of August 6th at midnight).

The number of deaths in connection with the virus is 9,175. A total of 195,200 people have survived the infection.

READ ALSO: 'The situation is worrying': Germany sees rise in coronavirus infections

According to RKI, the reproductive rate, or R-value for short, is around 0.9 in Germany (previous day: 1.02). This means that on average, one infected person infects around one other person. The R number reflects the course of infection about one and a half weeks earlier.

The RKI also gives a so-called seven-day R. It refers to a longer period and is less subject to daily fluctuations. According to RKI estimates, this number is 0.97 (previous day: 0.99). It shows the course of infection from 8 to 16 days ago.

Experts want to keep the R number under 1.

Measures including wearing masks on public transport and while shopping are in place in Germany. The RKI also recommended last week that face masks should be worn not only indoors, but also outdoors, if the  recommended 1.5-metre distancing cannot be maintained.

Member comments

  1. To those thinking about not wearing a mask, or going out to protest over government mandates in your area(s), just look at the US and specifically southern states like Florida, Georgia, and Texas (my home state) and ask yourself do you really want your country looking like any of the aforementioned??

    Do you want to risk your hospitals being overwhelmed to the point that the doctors are forced turn away people?? Which is basically a death sentence?? Do you want so many bodies piled up to the point that refrigerated trucks have to be used as “mobile morgues” cause the traditional morgues are beyond capacity?? Do you really wanna risk bringing corona home to your loved ones; older relatives whose immune systems been compromised, or younger ones whose immune systems not yet developed, and inadvertently kill them in the process??

    All that and a lot more is happening here in the US, and people still so selfish and value “muh freedumb” more than thinking of the bigger picture, which is of course limiting the spread of corona, getting it under control, returning the US to some semblance of “normal”, and saving lives.

    Yes, I understand that the masks can be uncomfortable at times for some, and others just don’t want to wear them at all, but we need to stop just thinking about ourselves and focus on the bigger picture: containing and one day wiping out corona, so lets just tough it out for the greater good.

    TLDR: Just do it. Wear the masks. Social distance. Don’t end up like the US and have more innocent people die due to selfishness and greed.

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CULTURE

‘People liked the silence’: How Berlin’s club scene is struggling after lockdowns

Berlin's clubs are suffering from staff shortages, a lack of guests... and neighbours who've grown used to the silence, representatives for the scene say.

'People liked the silence': How Berlin's club scene is struggling after lockdowns

Some operators from Berlin’s club scene are bracing themselves for a difficult autumn. For months now, people have been allowed to dance again and life has returned to normal in the dark corners of Berlin’s famous nightlife scene.

But the clubs have far from recovered from the pandemic. They face staff shortages, rising prices and the prospect of a return to Covid restrictions in the autumn.

“We go into the autumn with huge fear, because the omens are totally unfavorable,” said association head Pamela Schobeß.

Spring and summer went anything but smoothly, she said. “There has been an oversupply of events. People aren’t going out as much, and some are still afraid to move around indoors.”

Money is also an issue. “A lot of people are afraid of rising energy prices.”

The industry lost workers during the pandemic and it’s hard to convince them to come back with the outlook for the autumn looking so gloomy, Schobeß says.

Her colleague Robin Schellenberg tells a similar story. People have switched to various other jobs and would even rather work on a supermarket checkout, which may have been considered less sexy in the past. Now, he says, some have learned to love not having to work nights.

READ ALSO: 

Schellenberg runs the Klunkerkranich, a small club on a parking garage deck in Neukölln. Because a number of things have become more expensive, they have also had to increase their admission prices.

His impression is that people are going out less often and are deciding more spontaneously. In addition, people in the neighborhood are now more sensitive to noise. “Many people found the silence very enticing,” he said.

Some in the industry wonder what will happen next. Will club admission have to become much more expensive? Will that exclude people who can no longer afford it? And what happens if Covid infection numbers rise sharply?

If masks become mandatory indoors in October, Schobeß believes that would be bad for the clubs. “Even if we don’t get shut down by the state, we’ll actually have to close down independently ourselves,” she reckons.

Masks take all the joy out of the experience, she says. People have drinks in their hands and are “jumping around and dancing” and then security guards have to tell them “please put your mask on.”

The federal government is considering whether states should be able to make masks mandatory indoors starting in October. Exceptions should be possible, such as at cultural and sporting events, for people who have been tested, recently vaccinated and recently recovered.

In the event that Covid numbers soar, the states could then be allowed to tighten the rules and eliminate all exemptions.

READ ALSO: German court declares techno to be music

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