German Infection Rate Holds Below Key Threshold, Cases Steady

Germany’s coronavirus infection rate held below the key threshold of 1.0 for a sixth day, and the number of new cases remained far fewer than the level at the height of the outbreak.

  • The reproduction factor — or R value — edged up to 0.74 on Monday, from 0.71 the previous day, according to the latest estimate by the country’s health body, the Robert Koch Institute. This is far from the infection rates seen last week, when local outbreaks and increased testing lifted the number as high as 2.88.
  • The current estimate means that out of 100 people infected, a further 74 are likely to contract the virus. A number below 1.0 is seen as preventing exponential growth in the number of cases and a second wave of infections.
  • There were 349 new cases in the 24 hours through Tuesday morning, up from 235 the previous day and bringing the total to 195,042, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. That compares with almost 7,000 at the peak of the pandemic in late March.
  • There were 8 new fatalities, with the total number of deaths rising to 8,976.
  • The jump in the infection rate this month was driven by local outbreaks, including in two municipalities in the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia near a meat plant where most of the workers contracted the virus.
  • Due to the low number of cases in Germany, local incidents have a relatively strong influence on the reproduction number, according to the RKI.
  • “For this reason, the reproduction numbers may continue to fluctuate markedly,” the institute said.
  • The RKI also provides a seven-day R value designed to compensate for fluctuations. That value was 0.63 on Monday, down from 0.71 the previous day.

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