Germany warns of epidemic of Delta virus strain this fall

Half of the German population has received at least one dose of the 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine, German health authorities said today, but warned against complacency as the Delta variant strain, first identified in India, is expected to become a major epidemic strain.

The Delta variant, which is now spreading rapidly in the United Kingdom and around the world, accounted for slightly more than 6 percent of all new confirmed cases in Germany during the week ending June 6, double the previous seven days.

The total number of confirmed cases in Germany during the week ending June 6 was slightly more than 6 percent, double the previous day. Lothar Wieler, director of the Robert Koch Institute, said, “Delta will be the main epidemic strain by this fall.”

He said it is “biologically logical” that Delta will be the main strain because it is more infectious.

Data from the U.K. show that vaccination helps prevent the disease from becoming severe. The U.K. has one of the fastest vaccination rates in the world.

Still, Ville said, “That only works for people who are fully vaccinated.” He said anyone who gets only one dose of the vaccine can still get a variant of the virus and spread it. Currently, about 29 percent of the population in Germany is fully vaccinated.

Germany has relaxed most of its vaccination controls as the number of new confirmed cases has plummeted, restaurants and stores have reopened in the past few weeks, and swimming pools and museums are once again open to the public.

Germany reported 1,076 new confirmed cases today, while the number of new cases has continued to drop to 10 per 100,000 people over the past seven days.