Berlin, Mar 26 (efe-epa).- The head of Germany’s Robert Koch Institute on Friday warned that the country’s third wave of Covid-19 could be the worst yet.
Lothar Wieler, president of the federal body on disease control, told a press conference that reducing social contact to a minimum was key to mitigating the situation.
“There are clear signals that the third wave will be worse than the first two,” he said. “All indicators suggest the situation will be worse in the coming weeks.”
Germany’s seven-day Covid-19 incidence rate has surged in the last two weeks from 70 to 119.1 cases per 100,000 people. Health authorities on Friday detected 21,573 new Covid-19 cases across the country, some 4,000 more than last week’s tally.
Health Minister Jens Spahn warned that vaccination campaigns were less effective at bringing down Covid-19 figures when infection rates are already high.
He called on regional authorities to rapidly administer their stocks of jabs.
As of Thursday, around 3.6 million people, or 4.3% of the population, had received both doses of a vaccine.
Wieler called on the population to avoid all but essential travel both within Germany and abroad.
He said authorities would require all arrivals to present a negative Covid-19 test when entering Germany as of Tuesday — rather than Sunday, as had been previously announced.
It comes as officials try to limit the number of Germans traveling abroad for the Easter period. EFE-EPA