RKI warns of outbreaks: New Omikron offshoots are already dominating

Politicians and experts are counting on a new corona wave in the summer.

RKI warns of outbreaks: New Omikron offshoots are already dominating

Politicians and experts are counting on a new corona wave in the summer. According to the RKI, the reason for this should be the new sublines of the omicron variant. Accordingly, more outbreaks in old people’s and nursing homes can be expected again.

According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the omicron sublines, which have been increasing proportionally for a few weeks, are already dominant. "The strong growth of BA.4 and BA.5 in particular, but also BA.2.12.1, suggests that these variants currently already make up the majority of the evidence," says the RKI weekly report on Sars-CoV-2 . It is based on evaluations of virus variants.

This data in the report always refers to the week before last: BA.5 made up around 24 percent of the positive samples in a random sample at the time, which again corresponds to around a doubling of the value from the previous week. BA.4 and BA.2.12.1 were both around four percent. Because of the greater spread compared to the previously dominant pathogens, these variants could contribute to a renewed increase in the number of infections, it said. In the development of the seven-day incidence, the RKI speaks of a significant increase of around one third for the past week compared to the previous week.

All age groups are affected. More outbreaks in old people's and nursing homes and in medical treatment facilities have also been recorded again. "With the further increase in the number of infections, a renewed increase in infection pressure on vulnerable groups of people is to be expected." An RKI map showing the development of the infection process shows many districts with an increased number of cases, especially in north-west Germany.

The Secretary General of the German Society for Immunology, Carsten Watzl, expects incidences in the high hundreds as the summer wave of corona infections builds up. "We currently have two developments that work against each other," he told the Funke newspapers. "On the one hand, a seasonal effect that is depressing the numbers, and on the other hand, with Omikron, unlike in previous summers, a variant that is significantly more contagious."

Incidences in the range of 500, 600, 700 are to be expected, said Watzl. However, he does not believe that the threshold of an incidence in 2000 will be reached.

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