Contagious virus variant Many Bonn children infected with Omikron
Bonn · The number of infections with the mutated virus has more than doubled within four days. At least 135 households in Bonn are affected. After a Corona outbreak, the city imposes a ban on entering a Godesberg retirement home.
The feared Omikron wave is also gaining strength in Bonn. The number of confirmed infections with the coronavirus variant was reported by the city administration on Monday afternoon at 169. In addition, there were four suspected cases. This means that the number has more than doubled within four days. By 30 December, there were 74 confirmed cases, according to the city administration, after 49 Omikron infections had been registered by 26 December.
On Monday, the new mutant accounted for 13.7 percent of all infection cases in the past seven days: there were a total of 768 infections in that period, of which 105 were Omikron. Experts expect the variant, which is particularly contagious, to become fully established in the medium term. The true infection figures could already be higher than officially recorded: Between Christmas and New Year's Day, far fewer people are likely to have been tested in Bonn than outside the quiet days.
According to the city, 24 children are among those affected. The infections recorded by the health department broke out in 135 different households. "The people primarily become infected in the household," explained deputy city spokesman Marc Hoffmann. In twelve cases, it was a matter of people returning from travel. But the Omikron virus has apparently also been passed on during partying: According to Hoffmann, there is a "connection with private events" in the case of eleven infected persons. The city is not aware of any severe cases of the disease in any of the 169 people affected. Currently, 244 people in Bonn (confirmed cases and close contacts) are in quarantine because of Omikron.
According to the city administration, there are currently Corona outbreaks with more than three related cases each in three facilities. In addition to the Haus Mühlenbach senior citizens' centre and the Godeshöhe rehabilitation centre, the Johanniterhaus in Bad Godesberg has been particularly hard hit. The 119 residents of the senior citizens' home on Beethovenallee were still able to spend the Christmas holidays under normal conditions; the bad news followed on 2 January. Because the virus was found in eight residents - the Omikron variant has not yet been detected there - a ban on visiting and entering the entire home has been in effect since Sunday up to and including 16 January. According to the city administration, the reason is that all living areas are affected, especially those with a large number of contacts with each other.
Overall, the situation of the ill residents is stable, a spokeswoman for Johanniter GmbH, based in Berlin, announced on Monday: Some of the infected residents are asymptomatic, while others complain of fatigue, fever, coughs and colds, as well as respiratory problems in some cases. Two residents are in hospital, the others are being cared for in isolation in their living quarters. Visits to the building are only possible in the most urgent exceptional cases, and encounters are only possible in the garden - with a mask and distance.
Of the 123 employees of the house, which is located in the villa district, two colleagues are also in quarantine. "Apart from that, there are currently no further quarantine cases within the staff," said the spokesperson. When asked what the biggest challenge for staff and residents is at the moment, she mentions the psychological strain. Little more could be learned about the situation on site on Monday. All protective measures had been coordinated with the health department and were being implemented, the nursing service management said.
The incidence in Bonn on Monday was 219.9. 23 covid patients were in the intensive care units of the hospitals, 16 of them had to be ventilated.
Original text: Andreas Baumann and Rüdiger Franz
Translation: Mareike Graepel