The Robert Koch Institute reports around 157,000 new infections within 24 hours. That is about 35,000 cases more than on Tuesday a week ago. This brings the total number of infections in Germany to more than 16 million. The nationwide seven-day incidence rises again to now 1294 from 1259 the previous day. The lowest level of the current wave had been 1172 last week. 324 more people died in connection with the virus. This brings the total number of reported deaths to 124 450.
However, the numbers have limited significance. Experts believe there are a high number of cases not included in the RKI data. Testing capacities and health offices are at their limits in many places, and contacts are only followed up to a limited extent. For this reason, we map an average value from the reports of the past seven days in the SZ-Corona dashboard, which is intended to smooth out fluctuations from day to day. You can find more information on this in the transparency blog, and more data and graphics on the pandemic here.
Nevertheless, a trend reversal seems to be emerging in the development of Corona infections in Germany. After declining for some time, the nationwide seven-day incidence has now risen for the sixth day in a row. Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) expressed concern about the numbers rising again.
There are likely several reasons for the increasing incidence. The omicron subtype BA.2, which is considered to be even more contagious than the original omicron variant, appears to be becoming increasingly dominant. Since the beginning of the year, the share of BA.2 in the incidence of infection has been increasing, and by now the subtype is likely to be predominant in this country. According to the latest available figures from the RKI, it had already accounted for 38 percent of cases in a random sample in the week to February 20.
Modelers such as Kai Nagel of the Technical University of Berlin had warned two weeks ago that a resurgence in infection numbers could be expected from the end of February. Experts also believe a longer plateau is possible. The previous Omicron wave, which was mainly dominated by variant BA.1, hit younger age groups particularly hard. Currently, incidences in children and adolescents up to 14 years of age are again declining significantly. In most older groups, however, the RKI shows increases. According to the RKI, the peak of the wave is still to come for people aged 65 and over.
Photo by Mufid Majnun