Berlin (dpa) – The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) predicts a higher number of new infections for the week after Easter than around Christmas. The incidence could then be 350.
The reason for this is, among other things, the rapidly spreading corona mutant B.1.1.7, which was first discovered in Great Britain according to the management report of Friday evening. Meanwhile, the announcement of vaccine manufacturer Astrazeneca has had its first consequences. Thuringia therefore stopped the appointment of vaccinations and postponed the planned start of vaccinations for GPs.
Variant B.1.1.7 shows, according to the RKI, an exponentially increasing trend in the seven-day incidence since the second calendar week. This has doubled every twelve days. On the other hand, the course of all other variants shows a decrease of approximately 19 percent per week. These two trends are currently still being overlaid, generally leading to the only slowly rising seven-day incidence over the past four weeks.
The number of new corona infections in Germany is currently increasing. Health authorities reported 12,674 new corona infections within one day at the RKI – 3,117 more than exactly a week ago. The number of new infections reported within seven days per 100,000 population (seven-day incidence) was 76.1 on Saturday morning, significantly higher than the day before (72.4). In addition, an additional 239 deaths were recorded within 24 hours.
There has been a setback in the supply of corona vaccines: the pharmaceutical company Astrazeneca announced on Friday evening that instead of the last planned 220 million doses, only 100 million will go to the EU countries by mid-year. The German share of this is arithmetically around 19 million. The group justified this with, among other things, export restrictions without giving details.
A spokesman for the Federal Ministry of Health told the German news agency on Saturday: “Like all other EU member states, Germany will temporarily receive significantly less vaccine from Astrazeneca in March than planned.” According to the latest data submitted by the company to the European Commission Friday afternoon, the vaccine manufacturer should rebalance the fluctuations in supply by the end of March, the spokesman said. It is generally difficult to get reliable information about Astrazeneca’s delivery quantities. In contrast to Biontech, these often deviate from the announcements.
Thuringia’s Health Minister Heike Werner (Linke) described the announced supply cut as “absolutely unacceptable”. Werner also criticized Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU), who asked federal states in February not to withhold Astrazeneca vaccine doses because the delivery quantities were safe. “That’s exactly what we did and planned every dose of vaccine. Now the announcement from the Federal Ministry of Health is forcing us to cancel our appointments and postpone the involvement of GPs, ”said Werner. This is more than annoying.
A spokesman for the Bavarian Ministry of Health said the effects of the supply interruption will be carefully examined. Nothing will change for the coming week. Saxony-Anhalt’s Health Minister Petra Grimm-Benne (SPD) said the Astrazeneca announcement “put a bitter damper on vaccination progress in the state. We have to respond to this and adjust our distribution ». She also announced that she would postpone police vaccinations for the time being.
Federal Health Secretary Spahn says the newly approved Johnson & Johnson vaccine won’t arrive until mid to late April. According to information from EU circles, the background includes doubts about US export policy. The White House insists there is no export ban; However, the priority is to vaccinate the American population first. The European Commission has ordered a total of at least 1.4 billion doses of the four corona vaccines approved in the EU – more than enough for the roughly 450 million Europeans.
The state government of Brandenburg has made the Elbe-Elster district aware of the applicable regulations for additional corona protection measures from a seven-day incidence value of 100. This is a response to the fact that, despite a value of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants in a week, the district is above the 100, does not want to introduce additional corona measures. District clerk Christian Heinrich-Jaschinski (CDU) had said that if applicable regulations are followed, no new restrictions are needed. The so-called seven-day incidence was 156 on Saturday.
In view of the increasing number of infections, the planned “emergency brake” is also being discussed in North Rhine-Westphalia. First of all, it must be ascertained which circumstances led to the exceedance, said a spokesman for Health Minister Karl-Josef Laumann (CDU) of the “Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung”. “If numbers are only increasing because of the many additional tests in an otherwise stable infection process, this should be taken into account in further evaluations.”
FDP leader Christian Lindner called on the federal government to give citizens a guarantee of a first Corona vaccination at the start of the summer vacation. In addition, there should be tangible results at Chancellor Angela Merkel’s (CDU) and heads of state vaccination summit next Wednesday. “In particular, I expect that the vaccination will proceed faster through general practitioners, specialists and company doctors,” said Lindner of the German news agency. Merkel had discussed that all adults should receive a vaccination before the end of the calendar summer on September 21. The summer vacation starts differently, depending on the federal state, the first on June 21.