Head of Germany’s disease control agency warns of ‘terrible Christmas’

BERLIN – The head of Germany’s disease control agency has warned that the country faces a “truly terrible Christmas” unless steps are taken to combat a sharp rise in cases. coronavirus infection.

German lawmakers are debating measures on Thursday that would replace nationwide epidemic regulations, which expire at the end of the month.

The Robert Koch Institute, Germany’s disease control agency, said on Thursday that 65,371 new confirmed cases were reported in just one day, continuing an upward trend that experts have warned of for weeks. .

The agency’s director, Lothar Wieler, said: “We are currently moving towards a serious emergency. “We’re going to have a really terrible Christmas if we don’t take countermeasures now.”

Wieler said Germany needs to significantly increase vaccination rates above 75%, from 67.7% now. Some regions in Germany have vaccination rates as low as 57.6%.

He also called for the closure of clubs and bars, an end to large-scale events, and to limit access to many parts of public life only to those with vaccines or medical certificates. return.

Wieler warned that hospitals across Germany are struggling to find beds for COVID-19 patients and those with other illnesses.


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