As of: 12/29/2021 1:34 a.m.
The federal government wants to donate at least 75 million vaccine doses to poorer countries next year. Health Minister Lauterbach currently sees the assessment of the pandemic situation difficult due to inaccurate data. All developments in the live blog.
- Schulze: Germany wants to donate 75 million vaccine doses
- Lauterbach: Inaccurate data make Omikron evaluation difficult
US agency: Antigen tests are probably less likely to detect Omikron
According to the US health authorities, antigen tests probably do not detect a corona infection with the Omicron variant as well as previous variants. “Initial data indicate that antigen tests recognize the Omicron variant, but may have a lower sensitivity,” said the US Food and Drug Administration. Sensitivity is a measure of how likely it is that a test will show a positive result if an infection is present. The new data is based on initial research with live viruses from real patients, but the studies are ongoing.
The FDA went on to state that the use of antigen testing is still recommended – but people should follow official directions. If a person tested negative with a rapid test but is likely to have Covid due to symptoms or their proximity to infected people, they are still advised to take a PCR test – the “gold standard” for detecting corona infections.
Transport industry fears losses from Omikron
The transport and logistics industry fears heavy losses from the expected wave of Omikron infections. “If large parts of the population are actually infected by Omikron, then there will be major problems maintaining the supply chains,” said Dirk Engelhardt, supervisory board and executive board spokesman for the logistics association BGL, the editorial network in Germany (Wednesday). He therefore considers a “transport pact” with the federal government to be necessary: Politicians may have to set priorities as to what should be transported as a matter of urgency. “We need such emergency plans to prevent chaos like the flood disaster in the Ahr valley.”
Schulze: Germany wants to donate 75 million vaccine doses
The new federal government wants to donate at least 75 million vaccine doses to poorer countries next year without restricting its own vaccination campaign. Development Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD) told the editorial network Germany (Wednesday) that the goal of 100 million cans set for 2021 had been achieved. “But we cannot stop there. For the coming year we are planning a further donation of at least 75 million cans.” You agree with Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) that this is not to the detriment of citizens who are willing to vaccinate in Germany, said Schulze. “We agree that we will manage both: the supply of our own population and that of the poorer countries.” The effects of the pandemic in these countries are “really brutal”.
Schulze also rejected calls from his own party for the patent protection for the vaccine manufacturer to be lifted. “I would be open to it if it would help us now. But the manufacturing process for modern vaccines is so technically demanding and complex that exposure would be of no use.”
Police union: Corona demos burden officials
The police union fears that officials in constant use will suffer from psychological impairments from the ongoing corona demonstrations and so-called walks. “The many corona protests put a huge burden on the emergency services,” said the union’s federal chairman, Oliver Malchow, of the editorial network in Germany (Wednesday).
Riot police in particular would drive from one operational area to the next – often even in another federal state. Since there are more and more violent courses with high levels of aggressiveness against police forces, these operations are extremely stressful, stressed Malchow. “Managers are working hard to reduce the stress on their employees, but that is becoming more and more difficult.” In another interview, Malchow had already complained that the operations at the demos were neglecting other police tasks, for example traffic monitoring.
Lauterbach: Inaccurate data make Omikron evaluation difficult
Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) sees the assessment of the pandemic situation in Germany currently made more difficult by inaccurate data. Especially the dynamics of the new Coronavirus variant Omikron are “not shown correctly in the official figures because of the test failures and reporting delays”, Lauterbach told the “Bild” newspaper (Wednesday). “I am currently getting an overall picture of the situation with the RKI and numerous data sources from all over Germany.”
According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), there will also be delays in the transfer of data this year due to the holidays. There is also less testing. According to the newspaper, Lauterbach wants to get the health authorities to quickly ramp up the capacities for tests and contact follow-up.