Berlin (dpa) – According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the downward trend in newly reported corona infections in Germany may be related to the autumn holidays and may only be temporary. Last week, seven-day incidences dropped across all federal states and age groups, according to the RKI’s weekly report Thursday evening. “The school holiday factor, which influences both contact and testing behavior, still needs to be considered.” The decrease in incidence was therefore a total of 33% compared to the previous week.
This week, the number of reported infections has fallen further. In most federal states, Monday or Tuesday was a public holiday.
According to the RKI report, it is not only the incidence that has decreased in the last week: less severe courses of Covid 19 have also been recorded. The estimated number of doctor visits in this setting was also lower in a weekly comparison, as was the number of lab tests for Sars-CoV-2. Viral load in sewage showed a downward trend in the majority of the sites examined – this type of monitoring is independent of the use of tests.
Overall, the RKI expects a high number of respiratory illnesses in the coming weeks. “In particular, the positive rate and the number of illnesses caused by influenza show an upward trend, and RSV infections also lead to an increase in illnesses and hospitalizations, especially in young children.” RSV stands for Respiratory Syncytial Virus. The pathogen caused an extraordinary wave in some countries last year, which is also a consequence of the pandemic.
According to the latest available data from the penultimate week, the omicron BA.5 subline still dominates in Germany – with 96%, as the report shows. New derivatives of BA.5 such as BQ.1 and BQ.1.1, which should take hold in the coming weeks according to the models of the European disease control agency ECDC, are also multiplying in Germany. The RKI writes that the level is very low at around three percent in each sample. So far, according to experts, there is no indication that BQ.1.1’s nickname used in social media – “Hellhound” – is on the program.
According to another RKI report on Thursday, more than two million vaccinations were administered nationwide in October, particularly on Covid-19 vaccinations. Progress has been made in particular on the second vaccination boosters, recommended for example for the elderly. But: “For residents and clients of long-term care facilities, only a slow increase in vaccination rates for the 2nd booster can be observed,” writes the RKI. He calls for the flu vaccination to be “absolutely” used as an opportunity to supplement the vulnerable group’s Covid 19 protection.
© dpa-infocom, dpa:221104-99-378547/2