A biological-technical assistant holds prepared PCR tests for the corona virus. Photo: Julian Stratenschulte/dpa/SymbolbildDusseldorf. Omicron has become the dominant variant of the corona virus – also in NRW. The numbers are rising to record highs in many places. So far, this has not resulted in a burden for the hospitals. There are many new infections, especially among children and young people.The more contagious omicron variant of the corona virus also causes many new infections in North Rhine-Westphalia, especially among children and adolescents. According to figures from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the seven-day incidence in NRW jumped from 416.7 to 441.6 from Thursday to Friday. However, the health authorities are currently struggling to record new cases and track contacts. A week earlier, the number of new corona infections per 100,000 inhabitants was 291.5 within seven days. So far, the omicron wave has not had an impact on the intensive care units. In the 15- to 19-year-old age group, the incidence has risen to 913.1, according to data from the State Center for Health in North Rhine-Westphalia on Friday. The second highest value is shown in the detailed representation in the age group of 5 to 9 year olds with 838.4. The incidence among 10 to 14 year olds in the most populous federal state is almost as high at 833.4. In adults, the incidence is lower, the older the people are. The lowest value is 71 for the 80 to 84 year olds. However, the rate is slightly higher for older people. Nationwide, the number of new corona infections transmitted within 24 hours exceeded the threshold of 90,000 cases for the first time on Friday. In NRW, the number of new infections was 17,256 cases, 20 higher than the previous day and almost 3,600 new cases higher than on Friday the previous week. Another 23 people died from or with Covid-19, according to the latest data. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 20,722 deaths related to Corona have been recorded in NRW. The highest incidence continues to be in Wuppertal, which is the only city in NRW above the 700 threshold for the seven-day incidence (704.8). The cities of Leverkusen (696.7), Solingen (670.3), Krefeld (651.1), Dortmund (634.7) and the state capital Düsseldorf (617.1) have an incidence of more than 600. At the other end of the table is the district of Recklinghausen with a value of 244.5. The number of corona infected people to be treated in intensive care units in Germany has fallen just below the 3000 mark for the first time since mid-November, according to data from the Divi intensive care register (as of Thursday). Since the peak of the fourth wave in December with around 5,000 corona intensive care patients, the number has steadily decreased. The trend is also declining in the number of reported first-time admissions. However, experts see no reason to give the all-clear for the next few weeks, partly because of open questions about Omicron and an expected further increase in cases. “We should not see an increase in the number of intensive care patients in Germany so quickly,” said Christian Karagiannidis, scientific director of the Divi intensive care register, of the dpa. While with the Delta variant every fifth corona patient who came to a hospital required intensive medical care, with Omikron it was only around every tenth, he said. The data from the State Center for Health shows a similar situation. A total of 1812 corona patients are currently being treated in hospitals in NRW. That is only almost half as many as at the beginning of December 2021 and that is only about a third of the high at the end of December 2020. There has also been a downward trend in intensive care patients for weeks. The number of corona patients admitted to hospitals within seven days per 100,000 inhabitants was 2.95 on Friday (previous day: 3.02, previous week: 2.6).
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