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Host Nation Update, July 23, 2021
Baden-Württemberg – Corona incidence rises to over 11
Stuttgart – According to the state health office, the statewide figure ihs 11.4. The last time authorities had given a higher incidence was June 21: At that time, a new infection with the coronavirus had been detected in 12.0 people per 100,000 inhabitants within one week. Then the incidence had first fallen, and for some time it has been rising again. The R-value is currently 1.1, which means that one infected person statistically infects more than one other person. Meanwhile, 20 of the 44 urban and rural districts in the southwest are above an incidence of 10. According to the data, it is highest in Ulm with 26.0, and lowest in the Neckar-Odenwald district with 0.7.
Fifteen percent of the operable 2359 intensive care beds are currently vacant, according to the release. This value is important to assess the utilization of the health system. Intensive care beds are needed not only for Covid 19 patients with severe courses, however, but also for people with other serious illnesses. So far 6,515,255 people in Baden-Württemberg have now been vaccinated once against the coronavirus, according to the Robert Koch Institute. According to the data, that is 58.7 percent of the population. The national average is 60.4 percent. According to the data, 5,337,519 people in the southwest, or 48.1 percent (nationwide: 48.0), are considered fully vaccinated. With the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, one dose is sufficient. For all other vaccines, two injections are required. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, July 23)
Anticipated new Corona wave of infections during autumn/winter period –
RKI calls for getting prepared
Berlin – The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) is urging people to take preventive measures in various areas now because of what it sees as a probable increase in corona cases in the fall and winter. That way, severe disease progression, deaths and the burden on the health care system should be kept small “and population-based measures can be minimized,” the RKI writes in a strategy paper published Thursday that addresses various scenarios. Recommendations for action include a “successful vaccination campaign,” “classic infection control measures by public health departments” and the targeted use of interventions. According to the paper, the population should be informed “at an early stage that there could again be a heavy burden on the healthcare system” and possibly a regional or local overload in the winter, for example in the so-called ECMO capacity (special machines for patients with severe lung failure). The RKI emphasizes that “the idea of achieving herd immunity in the sense of elimination or even eradication of the virus” – i.e., extensive repression or eradication – is not realistic. The RKI has long advocated maintaining the basic rules against Corona, such as distance, hygiene, mask, ventilation and Corona warning app. The paper says organizational measures such as allowing employees to work from home, and attendee limits for events should continue to reduce the number of “infectious contacts.” For the care sector, hospitals and schools, the RKI will be giving more far-reaching advice, soon. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, July 23)
Corona vaccination – Why one can get COVID, despite vaccination
Berlin – In the fight against the Corona pandemic, all vaccines approved in Europe to date offer a high level of protection. Depending on the vaccine, the mRNA preparations from Biontech/Pfizer and Moderna reduce the risk of contracting Covid-19 by up to 95 percent against original Corona variants. For the so-called vector vaccines, efficacy after full immunization is somewhat lower: up to 80 percent for Astrazeneca’s vaccine, while Johnson & Johnson calculated 66 percent efficacy for its vaccine. “Vaccines against the Sars-CoV-2 coronavirus prevent people from contracting Covid-19 and offer highly effective protection against severe courses of the disease,” says the German Federal Center for Health Education. Their benefits far outweigh any potential risks.
Although, even if the vaccines significantly reduce the risk of contracting Covid-19, there is no 100 percent protection. As with other viruses, so-called vaccine breakthroughs can occur. The likelihood of someone becoming infected with the coronavirus and developing symptoms despite being fully vaccinated is “low, but not zero.”In its situation report of July 14, the institute lists 5374 registered such cases since the beginning of February. 676 affected persons had to be treated in hospital, of which 614 were older than 60 years. The Charité hospital in Berlin recently investigated why corona outbreaks can occur, particularly in nursing homes, despite complete vaccination of residents. According to the researchers, the fact that vaccines are generally more effective in younger people is mainly due to the fact that the immune response decreases with age. This is “significantly delayed” after vaccination and does not reach the level of younger people, the Charité said. In addition, some corona mutants, such as the delta variant (B.1.617.2) first discovered in India, can slightly reduce the efficiency of vaccines. The preparations from Biontech/Pfizer and Astrazeneca, for example, are hardly less effective against delta than against the alpha variant originally discovered in Great Britain, U.S. researchers recently reported in the New England Journal of Medicine. The prerequisite, however, is complete immunization. After only one vaccination dose, the efficacy is considerably lower (Stgt Nachrichten, July 23)
Rising infection figures – Italy tightens its corona rules again
Rome – In view of rising infection figures, Italy is tightening the Corona rules. From August 6, among other things, indoor restaurant visits, museums, gyms and swimming pools will require at least a simple proof of vaccination, a negative corona test or proof of recovery. The state of emergency has been extended until Dec. 31, according to a statement. In the country of about 60 million inhabitants, the number of new Corona infections has recently increased again. According to experts, more infections have been registered, especially among young people. According to the information, new rules will apply to the classification of risk zones against the pandemic (white, yellow, orange and red zones) from August. Accordingly, instead of the incidence, the utilization of hospital beds in covid 19 wards and intensive care units will be the decisive parameters in the future. On Thursday, health authorities in Italy registered nearly 5057 new Corona infections within one day and 15 deaths. More than 53 percent of the population over the age of 12 has been fully vaccinated so far. (Stuttgarter Nachrichten, July 23)
Schönaich (BB district): Police prevent narcotics deal
For several months, the Böblingen Criminal Investigation Department had been investigating a 33-year-old man and several accomplices from the Böblingen district and the neighboring district of Calw, who were suspected of bringing large quantities of cocaine and marijuana into the Böblingen district via Spain. These investigations, which were sometimes conducted undercover, currently provided evidence that the 33-year-old organized a larger shipment of narcotics, which was to arrive on Tuesday. Investigators struck at a warehouse in Schönaich on Tuesday afternoon after a suspicious van drove up there. A police mobile task force arrested the suspected individuals, a 22-year-old Turkish national, and the Polish driver of the van. In the hall, the task forces found a compressor case in which 60 packages, each containing about one kilo of marijuana and half a kilo of cocaine, were hidden. Subsequent searches at the homes of the suspects and a 39-year-old accomplice in Gäufelden and Neubulach led to the seizure of another nearly eight kilos of marijuana and 180 grams of cocaine, 76,000 euros in cash and other evidence. The two 33- and 39-year-old Germans and the 22-year-old Turkish national were brought before a magistrate at Stuttgart District Court at the request of the Stuttgart public prosecutor’s office, who remanded them to a correctional facility. (BB.heute.de, July 23)
Reminder: Autobahn access Böblingen-Ost closed as of Friday evening
Böblingen. On Friday evening, July 23, starting at 10 p.m., the Böblingen-Ost access ramp will be closed from the direction of the Thermalbad intersection. The closure is expected to last until Sunday, July 25. Road users are asked to take the Böblingen/Sindelfingen slip road or the Sindelfingen-Ost slip road. The closure is necessary as part of the so-called “Network Concept East” for the bridge construction of the K1055 over the K1057 in the course of the road realignment in the east of Böblingen and Sindelfingen. (BB.heute,de July 22)
Sindelfingen: L 1188 Landstrasse to Büsnau closed as of Monday
Sindelfingen: The Stuttgart Regional Council is renewing the roadway of Landstrasse 1188 between Sindelfingen and Büsnau from Monday, July 26, 2021, until probably Sunday, August 15, 2021. The work includes the removal of damaged areas in the asphalt base course., In the first construction phase, the section between the Hölzertalstraße and L 1188 intersection to the L 1188/L 1189 traffic circle will be renewed. Work will begin and is expected to continue until Monday, August 2, 2021. For reasons of occupational safety and traffic safety, the work can only be carried out under full closure. A detour route is signposted. During the first construction phase, the large-scale detour will lead from Stuttgart via the L 1189 to Magstadt/Ost – Neue Stuttgarter Straße – via the L 1185 to the B 464. Coming from Sindelfingen, the detour will run via the L 1188/L 1189 traffic circle to the L 1189 via Magstadt/Ost and the southern tangent to the B464. Subsequently, in the second construction phase, the L 1188 from the L 1188/L 1189 traffic circle to the entrance to Sindelfingen, including the traffic circle, will also be under full closure. The overall construction measure is expected to be completed on Sunday, August 15, 2021. (BB.heute.de, July 23)