After months in the Lockdown millions of people in Germany have longed for the pandemic to take a summer break. But nothing comes of it, the highly contagious delta variant of the corona virus takes hold. For days now, the numbers have been rising worryingly steeply.
Within twelve days, there was a doubling of the Seven-day incidence. As of Thursday morning, it was reported at 12.2. At the interim low on 6. July the value had been 4.9. According to the weekly report of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) on Thursday, the Corona case numbers have increased by an average of 61 percent within a reporting week nationwide. According to the report, the current rise in incidence is "particularly evident in the 15- to 34-year-old age groups".
Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) called the latest development dramatic at her summer press conference – and urgently objected to Vaccination fatigue. "The more vaccinated, the freer we will be again."
Jens Spahn warns of 800-incidence rate
Already on the previous day, Federal Minister of Health Jens Spahn (CDU) warned if current exponential increase continues, incidence would rise to 400 by September and 800 by October. These would be values that Germany has not seen in the pandemic so far.
According to SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach Delta is considerably more dangerous than suspected. "From everything we know so far, we have to ame that the delta variant is both more contagious and more deadly," Lauterbach told our editorial board.
Also Intensive Care Physician Are alarmed and also demand more progress in vaccination. This is the only way to control delta. But will Germany get the situation under control in time?
How much does delta spread?
According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the delta variant is now responsible for three-quarters of all infections in Germany. According to the Institute's weekly report on Thursday, Delta's latest percentage in a sample randomly selected for sequencing was as high as 84 percent.
On Thursday, 1890 new Corona infections and 42 deaths related to the virus were registered within 24 hours. The number of reported Corona deaths in Germany has thus risen to 91.458 increased.
However, the current deaths are not due to the Delta variant. The German Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine (Divi) makes this clear. Also the approximately 350 Covid-19 patients currently on Intensive care units are in the vast majority patients from the third wave, who were infected with the alpha variant in the spring, Divi President Gernot Marx told our editorial team.
However, experience from the United Kingdom, Spain and Portugal, for example, showed that the numbers in local clinics could rise rapidly, "this danger also exists in our country".
How the vaccinations are progressing?
In Germany, 48 percent of people – just under 40 million – are fully vaccinated against Covid-19. 60.4 percent have received a first dose. Several million people in this country are unprotected.
While most members of high-risk groups have been immunized. But many of them were vaccinated at the beginning of the year. Your protection against the virus is likely to weaken soon, experts say. Especially in view of the "delta autumn", a third dose will quickly become necessary.
Complicating matters further, early indications from Israel that the Biontech vaccine may be somewhat less effective against the rampant Delta variant.
How dangerous is Delta for younger people?
The World Health Organization WHO Quoted this week from a Canadian study that Covid 19 disease with delta variant also has significantly higher health risks than early corona types.
The risk of needing hospitalization was increased by about 120 percent, and the risk of needing intensive care by 287 percent. The Mortality risk was about 137 percent higher. Lauterbach also referred to this study.
At the same time, he warned of the consequences that the Delta variant would have for Younger may have. "An easy course for our children is not to be expected. Although we have to expect no or very few deaths there, there will be many also severe courses, the end result of which can be Long Covid also for children," said Lauterbach.
Although it is possible to have children over the age of twelve vaccinated with the Biontech active ingredient. A recommendation of the constant inoculation commission does not exist however. Therefore many parents hold back.
What does the development mean for the start of school?
The aim of the policy in the new school year is to provide instruction in the Classrooms to allow. It must be measured against this, says physician president Klaus Reinhardt: "Children and young people need for a healthy development a regulated school operation."
It proposes daily testing before classes begin, two Quick tests per week was not enough. The president of the German Teachers' Association, Heinz-Peter Meidinger, stressed: "If you want full face-to-face teaching after the vacations, you must also do everything to make it possible." The policy should be "very careful" with promises, which are not durable then because of an incalculable infection occurrence.