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COVID-19

Germany records more than 80,000 daily Covid infections

Germany reached a new Covid record on Wednesday after seeing more than 80,000 infections in the latest 24 hour period.

Commuters in Hanover main station on Wednesday.
Commuters in Hanover main station on Wednesday. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Julian Stratenschulte

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) said there were 80,430 confirmed Covid infections within 24 hours, indicating that the Omicron wave is beginning to hit the country at full force. 

A week ago, there were 58,912 infections within a day, although there have been gaps in testing and reporting during the holidays.

The 7-day incidence rose to 407.5 Covid infections per 100,000 people, compared to 387.9 the previous day. For comparison, a week ago, the nationwide incidence was 258.6, and a month ago it was 390.9.

Regionally, the incidence numbers vary hugely. The city state of Bremen has the highest 7-day incidence at the moment with 1296.8 infections per 100,000 people.

Schleswig-Holstein (633.0), Hamburg (568.9) and Berlin (856.4) are also reporting incidences of over 500.

When it comes to districts, the district of Bremen is highest with 1,394.2 infections per 100,000 people and the Berlin districts of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg (1,164.7) and Berlin-Neukölln (1,160.7) follow. 

The lowest state incidence is currently in Saxony, which has a 7-day incidence of 239.5. This region of Germany recently had the highest number of infections during the Delta variant wave, which recently began to ease. 

It is suspected that these differences are related to the spread of the Omicron variant – which began earlier in the north of the country – and to the higher risk of infection at the moment in large cities.

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What about deaths and hospitalisations?

Germany is still seeing a high number of daily deaths. In the latest 24 hour period, 348 people are reported to have died from or with a Covid infection. 

The number of Covid-19 patients admitted to hospital per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days was 3.34 on Tuesday (Monday: 3.37). This so-called hospitalisation incidence also varies greatly from region to region. In Bremen, it is 29.99. All other federal states report values below 10.

This benchmark is used to gage how overwhelmed hospitals are, and if new measures are needed. 

In general the number of Covid patients being admitted to intensive care units in Germany has been falling since mid-December, and currently stands at just under 3,200 patients.  

At the peak of Germany’s second wave last winter, there were more than 5,700 Covid-19 patients in ICUs.

Member comments

  1. Hospitalizations of those infected is a better metric to assess severity of the variant rather than total cases.

    Also, existing medical condition like diabetes, COPD or another chronic illness that contributes to death is seldom reported, including the age group.

    Reporting 80,000 infected without data content fuels the ongoing fear gripping nations to overact with continuous lockdowns, closures, restrictions that simply don’t work, despite majority of population being vaccinated. Yes, get vaccinated but move on with your life.

    Zero risk threshold of COVID infections will never happen. Vaccines are not 100% effective, just like the flu vaccines. The virus is here to stay and have to live it without disrupting our day-to-day lives.

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COVID-19 RULES

Germany to bring in new Covid rules ahead of ‘difficult’ winter

With infection numbers shooting up once again in Germany, states are set to bring in a new set of Covid measures on October 1st.

Germany to bring in new Covid rules ahead of 'difficult' winter

From Saturday, masks will no longer be required on commercial flights, though people will still be expected to wear an FFP2 mask on long-distance trains.

States will also be given the option to introduce mandatory masks in other public indoor spaces, including on local public transport and in schools. If they choose to bring in masks, they’ll also have the freedom to introduce exceptions to masks for people who are recently vaccinated or who have tested negative for Covid.

States will also be able to introduce compulsory testing in schools and nurseries.

READ ALSO: German states likely to keep mask mandate on public transport

Speaking at a press conference alongside Robert Koch Institute (RKI) chair Lothar Wieler on Friday, German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach defended the decision to keep Covid rules in place when other countries in Europe have largely got rid of their pandemic measures. 

“It’s not for me to criticise what other countries are doing,” said Lauterbach. “We have a particularly difficult winter ahead of us due to the energy crisis, we don’t want to make it worse through the Covid crisis.”

The SPD politician also defended plans for mandatory masks for residents and staff in nursing and care homes. Having 40 or 50 vulnerable people together in an enclosed space is “extremely high-risk”, he said. 

Under the new rules set to be introduced on Saturday, residents of care homes will be expected to wear FPP2 masks in all common areas of the home, and will only be able to take them off in their bedrooms.

“For people in nursing homes, the FFP2 mask requirement means a considerable cut in their quality of life,” Regina Görner, chairwoman of the Federal Association of Senior Citizens’ Organisations (Bagso), told DPA:

“The nursing home is their home, in which they can then no longer move freely without a mask.”

Visitors to nursing homes, meanwhile, will have to supply a negative Covid test, while staff will be tested three times a week. 

Under the autumn and winter rules, people across Germany will also be required to wear an FFP2 mask at their doctor’s surgery and in medical outpatient facilities such as hospitals.

“We’re better prepared than last autumn,” Lauterbach told reporters on Friday. “We have the infection numbers under control, we have this wave under control.” 

READ ALSO: KEY POINTS – Germany’s new Covid-19 rules for autumn

Steep rise in cases

As the weather turns colder, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) has reported a steep rise in respiratory infections, including Covid-19.

Last week, the number of Covid patients jumped dramatically from 500,000 to 1.2 million per week, with cases rising significantly in every age group.

Meanwhile, the 7-day incidence of Covid infections per 100,000 people shot up from 409 on Thursday to 466 on Friday. The previous week, the weekly incidence stood at 294 per 100,000 people. 

The numbers are believed to be partially inflated by the ongoing Oktoberfest beer festival, which is being held for the first time since the pandemic started. In Munich, the location of the festival, the weekly incidence is almost 800. 

Speaking at the press conference in Berlin on Friday, RKI chair Wieler warned people not to get complacent about the threat of infection.

“A mild course of illness simply means not ending up in hospital,” he said. “We should be conscious of how much risk we want take on, and how much risk we can avoid.”

RKI chief Lothar Wieler

Robert Koch Institute chair Lothar Wieler (l) and Heath Minister Karl Lauterbach (r) hold a press conference in Berlin on Friday. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Wolfgang Kumm

Despite the looming energy crisis, the RKI boss advised the public to ensure that rooms were well ventilated, adding that spaces normally occupied by a large number of people should be aired out more regularly.

He also advised people with Covid symptoms to stay home until they felt better in order to avoid passing on any infections, and warned that people should be especially careful to avoid contact with vulnerable people.

“Just like before, these people need our solidarity,” he said. 

Self-isolation and quarantine rules vary from state to state, but people who test positive for Covid generally have to isolate for a minimum of five days and a maximum of 10.

In some cases, people can take an additional Covid test in order to end their isolation early.

The RKI has also recommended that people wear a mask in public enclosed spaces. 

READ ALSO: What will the Covid situation in Germany look like this autumn?

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