Robert Koch Institute: Influenza is more common than corona in children

Status: 05/20/2022 07:12 AM

With summer temperatures in Germany, the number of corona infections is declining. Children are currently more likely to develop another respiratory illness, the Robert Koch Institute has found.

According to the Robert Koch Institute, children are currently diagnosed with more influenza than coronavirus. The institute wrote in its weekly report published Thursday evening that children between the ages of 5 and 14 are most affected. RKI is based on virological surveillance results.

“If symptoms of a new respiratory illness such as a runny nose, sore throat or cough develop, it is strongly recommended – regardless of vaccination status and also in the case of a negative Covid-19 test result – that contact avoidance is necessary, and if it is necessary to contact the family doctor’s office,” he said.

Experts are currently talking about a slight increase in influenza activity in Germany, which means that although a small increase in influenza cases have been diagnosed recently, according to the scientific definition, the influenza pandemic did not even begin in the 2021/22 season. The Influenza Task Force had reported about 2,000 cases in the past week. In the case of influenza, a large number of undetected and unreported cases are assumed.

Corona numbers are decreasing, but it is not very meaningful

Regarding the evolution of the coronavirus pandemic, RKI notes that the seven-day infection rate has fallen further in the past week – by 13.5 percent compared to the previous week. Many indicators of hospitalizations and deaths continue to decline. However: “Infection pressure remains high with about 400,000 cases of Covid 19 transferred to RKI over the past week,” says RKI.

Injury for seven days 361.8

The nationwide seven-day infection rate fell to 361.8 on Friday. The day before, the value of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants and the week was 383.2 (previous week: 485.7; previous month: 688.3). However, the infection does not provide a complete picture of the infection status. Experts have been hypothesizing for some time that there will be a large number of cases not recorded by the RKI – due to the stress of health authorities and because not all infected people have a PCR test. Only these count in the stats. In addition, late registration or transmission problems can distort individual daily values.

Within a day, health authorities in Germany reported 48,910 new coronavirus infections to RKI (previous week: 68,999 recorded infections) and 151 deaths (previous week: 164). Here, too, comparisons between data can only be made to a limited extent due to test behavior, late registrations, or transmission problems. In general, the number of new infections and deaths recorded varies greatly from day to day, as more and more federal states do not transfer to the RKI, especially on weekends, and report their cases later in the week.

Spread of virus variants

According to RKI’s weekly report, the omicron BA.2 variant is still prevalent in Germany. However, their share decreased slightly to 97.4 percent. On the other hand, the omicron subvariant BA.5 has grown, but so far at a very low level. It was 1.4 percent, according to the latest available data, a sample of the week before last. In previous weeks it was 0.5 and 0.3 percent.

“The currently increasing trend in the Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 lines, especially in South Africa and more recently also in Portugal, is accompanied by an increase in the number of Covid 19 cases and the positive rate,” writes RKI. In Germany, there has been a very small increase in BA.4 so far, from 0.1 to 0.3%. According to the report, there was no strong increase in the mixed variables either. However, not all positive samples have been tested for this purpose.

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