Status: 01/22/2022 02:22 a.m
Doctors’ representatives are already expecting bottlenecks in hospitals at the beginning of February. Health Minister Lauterbach wants to save PCR test capacities for critical infrastructure. All developments in the live blog.
Rio postpones carnival parades
Because of the Corna pandemic, the Brazilian metropolis of Rio de Janeiro has again postponed the world-famous carnival parades. “Due to the increase in Covid-19 cases in the city, we announce that we will move the carnival to the Tiradentes holiday in April,” the city administration said on Twitter. The holiday falls on April 21.
According to official figures, more than 23.5 million of Brazil’s 210 million residents have been infected with the corona virus. Almost 623,000 people have died related to Covid-19 – one of the highest death tolls in the world. Almost 70 percent of the Brazilian population is now fully vaccinated. Recently, the number of new infections has increased enormously, also influenced by the omicron variant and celebrations at Christmas and New Year’s Eve. On Wednesday, Brazil reported more than 200,000 new corona cases in one day for the first time.
Doctors warn: Clinics at the beginning of February at the limit
In view of the rapidly increasing number of infections, medical representatives see the clinics at their limit in just a few days. “By the beginning of February at the latest, it will be very cramped in hospitals across Germany if the number of infections continues to rise at this rate,” says Susanne Johna, chairwoman of the Marburger Bund doctors’ union, of the Funke media group. It is not only about increasing patient numbers, but also about staff shortages in clinics, laboratories and rescue services. This could mean that the supply of the population will no longer correspond to the usual standard.
Lauterbach wants to save PCR tests for the peak of the omicron wave
In view of the expected high corona wave from the omicron variant, Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach wants to save PCR tests. A positive rapid test should therefore not necessarily be followed by a PCR test: “My proposal for the Prime Ministers’ Conference provides that in future only employees of critical infrastructure can have a positive rapid test confirmed with a PCR test,” said the SPD politician “Rheinische Post”. All others who, for example, had a positive rapid test at home should only have this confirmed in the test center with a “professional rapid antigen test”.
Lauterbach expects several hundred thousand new cases of infection per day in a short time. “No health department will be able to deal with this anymore, not even with the help of the Bundeswehr. We therefore need a focus on contact tracing as soon as possible, for example with teachers, medical staff, employees of energy and water suppliers, emergency services and other areas of critical infrastructure.” The health ministers, the federal government and the states would discuss and launch a draft from his ministry, the minister announced. The federal and state governments will again discuss the corona situation on Monday.
Nursing staff shortages
The corona pandemic is exacerbating the shortage of nursing staff. “Without additional forces – whether from the Bundeswehr or from civil protection – there is a significant risk to supply,” explained Bernd Meurer, President of the Federal Association of Private Providers of Social Services, to “Welt am Sonntag”. The load limits have been reached, further staff shortages can no longer be coped with.
According to the report, some nursing homes are already considering stopping admissions. Such a step or the relocation of residents to other facilities cannot be ruled out at the current time, said a spokesman for the largest German home chain, Korian.