The spread of the delta variant of the corona virus is causing great concern – also in Germany. Virologist Christian Drosten warns urgently.
Berlin – “I’ve come to the point where I can say we’re now in the running in Germany with the Delta variant.” Christian Drosten said on Friday (June 18) at an online congress for infectious diseases and tropical medicine. “We have to take this really seriously from now on,” said the Charité virologist’s urgent warning.
Delta variant in Germany: Drosten warns – “We have to take this really seriously from now on”
The proportion of the delta variant of the coronavirus in Germany has almost doubled within just one week. According to an analysis by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for the first week of June, it is now six percent. In the previous weeks, the delta variant stagnated nationwide by around two percent.
“From the feeling I can say that more and more people are calling us who describe outbreaks, more and more laboratories,” explained Drosten. There is currently an outbreak in southern Denmark and Schleswig-Holstein. “That reminds me of the beginning of the B.1.1.7 epidemic in Germany, where it was the same,” the Charité virologist continued.
The more contagious corona variant B.1.1.7, which became known in Great Britain in 2020, drove Germany into a third wave of the corona pandemic last winter. The containment measures came too late or were too inconsistent.
Delta variant in Germany: situation comparable to England – Drosten puts forward a hypothesis
The current situation in Germany is somewhat comparable to that in England in May, analyzed Drosten. In Great Britain, the contagious Delta variant had taken over the predominance of corona vaccinations within a few weeks despite advanced rates. The incidences rose again from 20 to 70. Easing was therefore stopped. It was mainly young adults who were infected – for example when partying or in the catering trade, said Drosten. In England, the infections mainly took place in the vaccination gaps.
“If we were to calculate the way things have developed in England, with an approximate doubling per week, then we would have this speculative scenario: Then we would be at 20 percent this week,” said Drosten. At the beginning of July, the delta variant would then also be in the area of dominance in Germany. “And we would have to expect that the number of registrations in Germany would rise again at the beginning of July,” said the virologist.
But that is still pure speculation and a hypothesis. Germany still has a chance if it can further reduce the incidence in the next few weeks. “What could also help are the school holidays. In England it started in schools. There is a clear difference, “Drosten made clear. (ph / dpa)