Host Nation Update, January 14
Coronavirus in Baden-Württemberg – Incidence skyrockets: doubles in one week
Stuttgart – The seven-day incidence in Baden-Württemberg has recently risen extremely high, and is now at 478.6. The number of newly registered Corona infections within a week per 100,000 inhabitants increased by 131.1 compared to the previous day, However, the sharp increase was caused by the fact that due to a technical malfunction on Wednesday, the reporting data was not completely transmitted to the database.
A week ago, the incidence was 256.3. The increase in infections, however, is not reflected in hospital intensive care units. The number of people being treated there for coronavirus fell further to 378, down 9 patients from the previous day. A month ago, 653 people had been in intensive care units because they had contracted the virus.
So far, 24,026 cases of the highly contagious omicron variant (B.1.1,529) have been reported to the office from Baden-Württemberg – 6079 more than the previous day. Omicron cases reported daily by the LGA include both suspected cases and cases confirmed by whole genome analysis. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Jan 14)
Schools in Stuttgart – Despite all-clear: some doubts about antigen tests remain
Stuttgart – The irritations about the quality of the rapid antigen tests used in Stuttgart schools have not yet been completely resolved. Are rapid antigen tests, which only react to very high viral loads, sufficient even if students test less frequently? Students in part-time classes are tested only once a week. In this case, the sensitivity of the rapid tests is all the more important, says the principal. As it turns out, the city of Stuttgart has also distributed rapid tests to schools as part of the supplies from the Ministry of Social Affairs, which only react to a very high viral load, but not at all to only “high viral load”. Stefan Ehehalt, the head of the Stuttgart health office, had explained that this was sufficient, and also justified this with the serial tests. These would help to detect an early phase of a disease.
He apparently does not consider it necessary to differentiate between students who are tested daily or three times a week and those who are tested only once a week. “I can give the all-clear to the school administrations,” he explained on Thursday, “from my point of view, there is currently no need for action.” (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Jan 14)
Non-Covid related news:
City sets ambitious timetable – Stuttgart wants to bring forward climate neutrality by 15 years
Various initiatives and youth groups have long been pushing for a tightening of climate targets in Stuttgart as well. Until now, the year 2050 stood for net zero in carbon dioxide emissions. Many parliamentary groups have been pushing for a revision of this plan for months.
Now OB Frank Nopper is reacting.
The new federal climate minister Robert Habeck (Greens) wants to triple efforts to combat climate change in order to achieve climate neutrality by 2045. The state capital has so far shown itself to be less ambitious. 2050 is the target. In the city council, various factions have been pushing for months to show more ambition.
Mayor Frank Nopper (CDU), who postponed the discussion last year, is now reacting. Next Thursday, in a general debate, the council is to issue an official test order to achieve climate neutrality 15 years earlier. A broad majority is foreseeable for the new 2035 target. Nopper (CDU), however, does not want to have the new target year finally decided until before the summer break. Until then, it must be clarified that the new roadmap is “realistic, socially and economically compatible” and contains “concrete proposals for measures for the individual emission sources,” according to the draft.(Stuttgarter Nachrichten, Jan 14)