Original title: European epidemic reignited, many countries “closed cities”
Source: Beijing Commercial Daily
This winter may be a bit difficult for Europe. The new wave of epidemic counterattack is aggressive, and the number of newly confirmed cases in many countries has once again hit a new high, and it is the extreme value since the outbreak. In this context, tightening of epidemic prevention measures has been put on the agenda again, and more tense areas have taken the lead in “closing the city.” No way, the WHO has issued a warning. If no measures are taken, the danger will be within half a year.
In response to the current epidemic situation in Europe, the WHO has given the latest judgment. On November 20th local time, Hans Kruger, Director of the WHO Regional Office for Europe, said that according to the current development of the new crown epidemic in Europe, if emergency prevention measures are not taken, there will be 500,000 in Europe by March next year. People died of new coronary pneumonia.
This statement is not alarmist. Since the fall and winter, the epidemic situation in Europe has continued to deteriorate, and the number of newly confirmed cases reported in some countries recently hit a new high since the epidemic.
Take Germany as an example. On November 20, local time, the data released by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the German disease control and prevention agency, showed that in the past 24 hours, there were 63,924 new confirmed cases of new coronary pneumonia in Germany, which is more than the previous one. There were an increase of 9,000 cases per day, again exceeding 60,000 cases. This is also the fourth consecutive day that the country has added more than 50,000 cases in a single day. Just a few days ago, on the 18th, the number of newly diagnosed cases in Germany in a single day even exceeded 65,000, reaching 65,371, a record high since the outbreak.
The more serious problem is that this situation is rapidly deteriorating. On the 20th, the RKI used to monitor the severity of the epidemic’s “average cumulative number of newly confirmed cases per 100,000 people in seven days” (incidence rate index) rose to 362.2, which was the 13th consecutive day since the country’s maximum value since the outbreak. . At the same time, there are 56 additional patients who need to receive ICU intensive care treatment, bringing the total number to 3565.
“Germany will also usher in the fifth wave of the epidemic,” RKI Director Willer told Deutsche News Agency that if the country cannot successfully reduce social contacts between people and greatly increase the vaccination rate, according to current modeling Predict the result, “If we don’t take countermeasures now, we will really have a very bad Christmas.”
Not only Germany, but Europe as a whole is in an unprecedented period of high epidemics. The World Health Organization’s weekly report on the global new crown epidemic released last Tuesday showed that in the past week in Europe, 230 new cases were confirmed every 100,000 people within 7 days, the highest in the world.
According to data released by the French public health department on the afternoon of the 20th, in the past 24 hours, 22,678 new confirmed cases of new coronary pneumonia in France have been diagnosed, and the total number of confirmed cases has approached 7.4 million; at the same time, the number of inpatients and severely ill patients with new coronary in France has continued to increase.
Some countries have also set new records. For example, in Austria, the data released on the website of the Ministry of Health of the country on the 19th showed that the country has 15809 new diagnoses in a single day, setting a record for the highest number of new diagnoses in a single day since the outbreak, with a total of more than 1 million confirmed cases; 48 new deaths, a cumulative total 11951 cases died. In Poland, the occupancy rate of hospital beds for the treatment of new crown patients has reached 72%. According to Polish Minister of Health Nederski, Poland may usher in a new wave of infection peaks next month.
Tighten epidemic prevention measures
“The resurgence of the epidemic in Europe is obvious to all.” Ding Chun, director of the Center for European Studies at Fudan University, pointed out the following reasons: First, winter is the period of high epidemics, and the proliferation of mutant viruses makes the situation more troublesome; In Europe, especially after mass vaccination, the government and people’s attitudes towards the epidemic are showing signs of relaxation, epidemic prevention measures have been relaxed, and awareness has also become lax. Regarding vaccination, the overall vaccination situation in Europe is uneven, and some Central and Eastern European countries are not strong enough, which may lead to high infection rates.
Indeed, the relaxation of restrictions and the increase in indoor activities have continued to increase the risk of the epidemic. Willer pointed out that Germany is currently “opening too many fields too fast.” The same is true in Ireland. Paul Reid, the chief executive of the country’s Health Services Executive, also said that after most of the anti-epidemic measures were lifted last month, the number of confirmed cases, hospitalized cases, and severe cases in Ireland has increased significantly, bringing the nation’s health care system to life. Coming under tremendous pressure.
In addition, Ding Chun also mentioned that in fact, from the perspective of the overall economy, Europe will certainly not be able to continue the blockade as before. The control capabilities and national habits of different countries are different. Some countries will be stricter and will restore some restrictive measures, while some countries will be looser.
Regarding the situation in Germany alone, Ding Chun said that the current government is still in a state of failure, and the caretaker government is in charge. This is also one of the reasons for the raging epidemic in Germany.
Regarding the current situation in Germany, Weiler believes that clubs and bars must be closed, large-scale events should be cancelled, and epidemic prevention regulations should be strictly enforced. In some public areas, only vaccinators and COVID-19 patients can enter.
In fact, in the new round of peaks, some German states have already acted. The severely affected state of Bavaria announced that it will implement measures to “close the city” in many counties with an incidence index of more than 1,000, including suspending the traditional Christmas market that was about to open, closing bars, clubs and other places, and requiring the catering industry to advance in the evening Close of business.
Similar to Bavaria, Germany, under the raging winter epidemic, tightening of epidemic prevention measures has become the current focus of many European countries.
Austria is already ready to take the lead in entering the “closed state” mode. According to the Austrian government’s announcement on the 19th, the nationwide residents will be “banned” from the 22nd to curb the spread of the new crown epidemic. This is the fourth time that Austria has announced a nationwide “ban” since the outbreak. Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schellenberg said that the “ban” will last for 10 days, with students attending classes at home, restaurants closed, and cultural activities cancelled.
The Netherlands is also implementing three-week prevention and control measures, including restoring the 1.5-meter social distancing requirement in public places and restricting the business hours of commercial stores. According to the latest regulations of the Irish government, starting from midnight on the 18th, unless necessary, everyone must return to work from home.
In addition to social restrictions, countries have also taken the opportunity to start a new round of vaccination urges, because in the eyes of many experts, insufficient vaccination is also an important incentive for this round of the epidemic.
“It’s our low vaccination rate to blame. We didn’t do a good job of what we should do.” said Susanna Herold, director of the Department of Infectious Diseases at the University Hospital of Giessen in Germany. The impact of the epidemic was simulated and warned that because the delta mutant virus is highly contagious, the vaccination rate in Germany must reach at least 85% to avoid a crisis.
According to data released by the Robert Koch Institute on the 18th, 67.8% of the people in Germany have completed the entire vaccination process.
In this regard, Julian Tang, a virologist at the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom, pointed out that “Delta strains can easily bypass natural immunity and vaccine immunity, and cause more symptomatic and serious infections in people who have not been vaccinated.” .
Hans Kruger said that strengthening the requirements for wearing masks may have immediate results. In addition, he also mentioned the “vaccine passport” and mandatory vaccination. He believes that although the new crown vaccine is still controversial, it can still be used as a “last resort.”
Many countries have been ruthlessly dealing with the issue of vaccination. In Greece, as early as November 6th, citizens who have not been vaccinated need to have a negative certificate of the new coronavirus nucleic acid test to enter shops, barber shops, banks, public institutions, restaurants and other places.
Austria can be regarded as the most radical attitude. It has announced that it will implement mandatory vaccination from February 2022, becoming the first EU country to implement mandatory vaccination.
Compared with Greece, France and Germany acted more slowly. In Germany, despite repeated calls by the caretaker Chancellor Merkel, there are currently no clear restrictions on people who are vaccinated. In France, President Macron said last week that there is no need for France to “block” people who have not been vaccinated against the new crown.
However, the three political parties including the Social Democratic Party, which are negotiating to form a new government, stated on the 15th that they intend to require people to show a negative test for the new crown virus, a certificate of vaccination against the new crown or to recover from the new crown when they take public transportation and enter the workplace. Prove.
In the opinion of Xu Hongcai, deputy director of the Economic Policy Committee of the Chinese Academy of Policy Sciences, it is normal for the epidemic situation to occur repeatedly now, including in Europe, but due to the increase in vaccination rates, the current situation is better than before. For example, the mortality rate may increase. reduce.
However, Xu Hongcai also mentioned that for Europe, the crisis that has a greater impact this winter lies in energy issues and supply chain issues. The rising prices of oil and gas, coal, and electricity have a greater direct impact on people’s livelihood.
Beijing Commercial Daily reporter Tang Yitian
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