- "The outbreak has - as of today - become controllable and manageable again," said Health Minister Jens Spahn.
- Germany added 2,945 new cases of coronavirus and 248 deaths on Thursday, bringing the total to 138,497 cases and 4,193 deaths as a result of the pandemic.
- The German government announced on Wednesday that the restrictive measures on movement will be extended until May 3.
German Minister of Health Jens Spahn stated that the “total shutdown,” put in place four weeks ago by the federal government, has been a success. As a result, Spahn was convinced that the outbreak is “under control.” The press conference was Spahn’s first assessment of the effectiveness of the measures adopted.
Spahn specified that the COVID-19 curve has gone from a dynamic growth of infections to a linear one. “The outbreak has – as of today – become controllable and manageable again,” he said. Spahn added that the country’s health care system had “at no time been overwhelmed so far.”
The Robert Koch Institute has released data to the effect that Germany’s person-to-person infection rate— commonly referred to as “R”— was down to 0.7. That implies that each person infected with the disease in the country is infecting less than one other person, on average.
Butcher’s Bill: 138,497 Cases; 4,193 Dead
Germany added 2,945 new cases of coronavirus and 248 deaths on Thursday, bringing the total to 138,497 cases and 4,193 deaths as a result of the pandemic.
By state, Bavaria remains the most-affected in Germany, with 36,027 infected and 1,137 deaths, followed by North Rhine-Westphalia, with 27,030 infections and 726 deaths; Baden-Wuerttemberg, with 26,543 cases and 872 deaths; Rhineland-Palatinate, with 5,211 infected people and 92 deaths; and Berlin, the capital, where there are 4,945 positives and 84 deaths.
The German government announced on Wednesday that the restrictive measures on movement will be extended until May 3, although it confirmed that it will launch a phased easing plan. The plan includes the reopening of bookstores and other retail stores with premises of up to 800 square meters in area effective from Monday, as well as car and bicycle outlets.
The German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, made the announcement on Wednesday, after consultations with the leaders of Germany’s 16 federal states. She warned that there was “little margin for error,” and that “caution should be the watchword.”
Libraries, zoos, and botanical parks will be able to be visited by members of the public again, although in all these cases strict interpersonal distancing and hygiene measures must be maintained to minimize the risks of contagion from the coronavirus.
In relation to services that require greater “physical proximity,” such as hairdressing salons, the government plans to reopen them as from May 4, and encourage the use of personal protective equipment. Restaurants, bars, and pubs shall remain closed, and hotels will continue to be “available only for necessary and expressly non-tourist purposes.”
Gatherings in churches, mosques, and synagogues, as well as religious celebrations and events and gatherings of other religious communities, will continue to be prohibited, according to the agreement reached by the federal government and local authorities. In addition, schools will be re-opened from May 4, while sports and cultural events will continue to be prohibited until August 31.