Sunday, November 28, 2021

Germany’s COVID Infection Rates To New High As Vaccinations Slow Down

BERLIN (AP). Germany’s coronavirus infection rate hit an all-time high on Monday as what officials called a “pandemic of the unvaccinated” gathers steam.

The National Center for Disease Control, the Robert Koch Institute, reported that there were 201.1 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the country in the past seven days. This was above the previous record of 197.6 from December 22 last year. While this figure is still lower than in some other European countries, it is alarming.

Seven-day infection rates have long since ceased to be the only criterion for COVID-19 policy in Germany, but officials say hospitals are filling up in hard-hit areas. The Center for Disease Control said Monday that 15,513 new cases have been reported in the past 24 hours – up from a record 37,120 on Friday, but after the weekend, those numbers tend to be lower.

Germany has struggled to find ways to step up its vastly slowed vaccination campaign. According to official figures, at least 67% of the population of 83 million people are fully vaccinated, which, according to the authorities, is not enough. Unlike some other European countries, he refused to make vaccinations mandatory for any professional group.

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As in many cases during a pandemic, there are different regional regulations in Germany. In most places, access to many indoor facilities and activities is restricted for people who have been vaccinated, recovered or tested, the latter now being excluded in some areas. These rules are often poorly enforced.

Rules for whether students should wear masks in class vary from state to state.

Free rapid tests for everyone were canceled almost a month ago to encourage more people to get vaccinated. There are now widespread calls for their reintroduction. And now officials are in favor of booster vaccinations for anyone who received their first shots six months or more ago.

At present, an interim national government is operating in Germany after the September elections. The parties expected to form the next government plan to introduce legislation to parliament this week that would allow the “national epidemic” in force since March 2020 to end at the end of the month, but provide a new legal framework. on measures to combat coronavirus.

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Follow AP coverage of the pandemic at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic

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