KlimaZen Profile picture
24 Nov 20, 2817 tweets, 2170 min read
Meanwhile in #France,
"the peak of this second wave is over"

(according to the President in his Adress to the Nation):
Wait... "the peak is over" doesn´t mean "it´s back to normal"!

Confinement will only fall on December 15,
if there´s less than 5.000 new cases a day.
(today it´s ~9.000).

France is disappointed.🙁

Although they certainly can make it happen.
Meanwhile in #Switzerland:
(excess mortality of the second wave is significant)

Good news: fastest decrease in infections happens in the worst hit areas now.
South #Australia found out
the recent #COVID19 outbreak was not only brought out from one of their quarantine hotels - there were even infections (personnel->quaratinees?) happening inside the facility...
South #Australia is now working on major changes in their #quarantine system:
~no hotel for "positive" travellers, but at pllice-guarded medical facilities
~mandatory testing *before* boarding a flight to Australia
#Tokyo sees a "drastic rise in severe #COVID19 cases".

Today: 54 in "severe" hospital treatment.
Until 2 days ago it was constantly hovering around ~40.

Now we know what colour was reserved for #COVID19 incidences above 500:

it´s fancy PINK!
(for #Hildburghausen, 526.9
First time ever a district in #Germany has reached that level...)
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… Image
In response to record #COVID19 numbers,
#Hildburghausen has issued a general decree.

Main point is: schools have to close.
(otherwise it´s the most liberal "lockdown extra light" I´ve seen so far in Germany...).
landkreis-hildburghausen.de/media/custom/2… Image
Tonight, a crowd of people rallied against #Hildburghausen´s measures.
#Germany´s twitter goes crazy because ´no one was wearing masks´😱
(well, the district´s decree doesn´t even mandate them in this context...🤷)

I´ll leave it with this chinese comment:

583 (553 locally acquired) new #COVID19 cases in South Korea.
That's ~200 more than yesterday.

(in fact:
the highest number since...
South Korea's highest number
since early March.

Back then, the high numbers were due to outbreaks in typical settings (night-life, churches,...)

"We are now in a situation where virus outbreaks can happen at any place we live in"


(and it´s spreading to neighbouring "Suhl",
which has lost its "yellow" ranking - their incidence jumped from ~35 to 65 today.)
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… Image
Another index, a different colour:
#Hildburghausen is red now.

That means:
all beds in intensive care are full.

(it´s a small clinic with just 8 ICU beds.
"Only" 2 are occupied by #COVID19 patients. Both on ventilators.)
experience.arcgis.com/experience/3a1… Image
Yes, #Hildburghausen is a small district, so every single #COVID19 case will cause a large jump in their incidence.

(And then: every single death will leave a real gap in such a community. Apparently 2 died yesterday.
Other sources say: 3 more today...)
landkreis-hildburghausen.de/media/custom/2… Image
Oh no.
Don't trust your car's air condition !!!
Certain circumstances (tunnels, heat, cold) will let it *automatically* switch to recirculate mode!

My trial in August:
-1 person
-air con on, "fresh air" mode

-> from 500 to 1.400 ppm CO2 in 20 minutes!
I see comments like "What a shame, we (Germany) do send aid to remote places of the world - but we don't install a field hospital in #Hildburghausen to relief the crowded hospital from #COVID19 cases."

The most remote places just manage #COVID19:
"Everyone is urged to leave the city center"

#Rotterdam´s mayor decided to shut all shops,
due to "extreme crowding" in the city.

It´s "#BlackFriday".
#BlackFriday while #COVID19 cases in NL are staying constantly high.
A balancing act between interests.

(with priorities, obviously...)
When tourism service ´MustSeeRotterdam´ tweets

"It´s really too crowded here, folks ! Go home please !"

You know it´s serious.
🔊"...for your own health: go home ! Shops will close now!"

#BlackFriday #Rotterdam
#Netherlands´ disease center #RIVM:

"Second wave may not be over until March"
- fewer working from home
- less sense of urgency
- "last weekend, shopping streets were quite crowded"
(that interview took place before pictures of #BlackFriday came in).
Q: Why were infection numbers decreasing much faster in the beginning?
#RIVM "might be the effect of school holidays"

Slovakia has reduced its numbers via testing...
RIVM "yes, but they also closed schools"

Why don´t we close schools?
RIVM "~We as a society chose not to do so."
NL´s #RIVM: "the infections in 20-24 year olds have decreased (bars are closed).
Now the main infections are in 15-20 olds. That could be the older high school students....

And another important group is 50-60 year olds. They clearly get infected at work (besides at home)."
"#School settings may make up for ~8.5% of infections (with known origin(!)).
That doesn´t say it happens *in* schools, it may be *around* schools.

School setting infections are (only) half of infection numbers from workplaces or at home".
nos.nl/artikel/235840… Image
Belgium has managed to step down from "1st in #COVID19 incidence of Europe" to place 21.
But no big ease in sight:
If you´re single, you will still only be allowed to have ONE #kuffelcontact💞at home!
You may invite a second person. But with distancing!
Q:"But, but, all our neighbours are allowed to have parties for Christmas!!!"😫

Belgium´s Health Minister answers...,

(it feels narrow-minded, fun-killing, simply annoying,
but you know:
he´s right.)
His answer in short: "Yep. Our neighbours aren´t wise"
#Hildburghausen hits the panic-button.
From tomorrow on, everything is cancelled / banned:
Town council meetings
Political party essamblies
Religious assemblies
Markets and fairs

Rallies and funeral ceremonies need authorization

(masks are mandatory)
landkreis-hildburghausen.de/media/custom/2… Image
Even the age groups
0 to 4 years
5 to 9 years
had a week-incidence around ~300 ?!

It´s obvious, why they closed schools and kindergartens, then.
(data of #Hildburghausen, ~1 week ago)
corona-data.eu/thueringen/lk-… Image
#Austria is about to provide rapid testing to their entire population.
#Vienna starts early:
from December 04 to 13,
they will have 3 large testing venues.
With 286 parallel test lines.

"That should be good for 14.000 rapid tests per hour."

Q: "Why does #Vienna's test campaign start earlier than the rest of #Austria?"

A: "We'd like to have everyone enjoying Christmas. Even, if they had a positive #COVID19 test, their (10 day) quarantine would be over by then".
Three months with no #COVID19 case
in the entire country (#Vietnam)

1 man changed that.
After 2 negative tests, he "met with friends and family when he should have been self-isolating."

Test #3 was "positive".
200 contacts...
The quarantine break in #Vietnam has already lead to spreading #COVID19:
Case 1347 is an English teacher.
He already infected a student and his nephew.

Case count is now at 1351.
(For the entire country,
for the entire pandemic,
including imported cases!)
After several outbreaks/clusters, South Korea has a record number of people in quarantine.

Prime Minister: "the latest virus wave is difficult to control by government measures alone, as transmissions were reportedly occurring virtually in all places."
490,000 students +120.000 staff will take part in South Korea's College Scholastic Ability Test (CSAT) on Thursday.

Among them:
21 coronavirus patients and
144 people in quarantine.

Those who tested "positive" will take the exam in special hospitals.🎓
Don't feel fit for your college entry exam?
Thinking about taking a sick leave instead?
Forget it (in South Korea)!

There are 172 dedicated hospital beds ready for #COVID19 exam student patients.

(Their future life depends on that one exam...)
Thinking about that guy,
calling Berlin's #COVID19 hotline to ask which places were the most risky ones for catching the virus.

Turned out he was a student, trying to get infected in order to be excused from exams.

From Berlin's Health Authority podcast:
"Red Alert for the entire KPOP industry":
Members of 2 #KPOP bands have been found to be infected with #COVID19.

Many potential contacts are already being tested.
TV shows and concerts are cancelled across South Korea...
Following reactions of (presumably) young KPOP fans from around the world, there´s no way to say "young people don´t care about #COVID19".

Discussions evolve around asymptomatic spread,
and there´s a petition to stop all concerts to prevent further spread
now taken seriously:

"In indoor settings with poor / unknown ventilation,
better wear a mask when welcoming visitors.

(new modification of #WHO guidance):
who.int/publications/i… Image
Maybe it´s a backlog and
#Hildburghausen didn´t really see 8 people die in 1 day😯

But out of a total 19 who died there in relation to #COVID19 during the entire pandemic, 18 seem to have died in the last ~30 days...
(says their official daily report):
landkreis-hildburghausen.de/Aktuelles-Covi… ImageImage
In ~a month, #France has brought new #COVID19 infections down from
~50.000 a day to
~10.000 a day

Their goal is to reach 5.000 per day,
on December 15th.

(That would mean a crazy low 7 day incidence of ~50!)
It looks like they´re on their way to make it!
10 days ago, #Seoul had imposed social distancing measures (Level 2.5)

"If we enter into Level 3 of social distancing, all economic activities will effectively grind to a halt,"

"Level 3 is the last card we will use in a desperately dangerous situation"
It's not just #Seoul.
"Bigger wave of pandemic in progress"...
It's developping all over South Korea.

"the current level of measures is ineffective"
South Korea´s life deciding CSAT school exams fell in a "lucky" period of lower case numbers.
They would not have been possible with Level 3 restrictions.

They went like a smooth clockwork.
Even for those in #COVID19 hospital isolation wards...
For the first time, #Seoul has decided to turn off night life after 9 p.m.

"We have tried hard to come up with measures that would allow the economy to rotate as much as possible.

But now, our priority is to protect the safety and lives of our citizens."
Osaka (Japan) turns on the red warning lights.

"I would like to officially announce a state of emergency for medical facilities," #Osaka´s Governour told reporters.

(Hospital / ICU beds for #COVID19 patients are over 50% occupied.)
japantoday.com/category/natio… Image
In many of Germany´s cities, #COVID19 case numbers still won´t come down.
There seem to be no defined #Clusters.
The spread is very diffuse in the community.

One new measure is:
Nighttime curfews in high-incidence places.

#Mannheim will start tonight:
Tricky details in #Mannheim´s curfew ordonance:
Q: "Will shops have to close after 9 p.m.?"🥺

A: "No worries. They´re free to stay open if they wish. It´s just that no-one will be allowed to go out for shopping."😏
mannheim.de/de/information… Image
Some areas in Austria have started mass testing for #COVID19 (rapid antigen-tests).
For #Vorarlberg, the results are published in realtime:

Today, 52.342 tests have been performed
of which 191 turned out to be currently infectious.
(all asymptomatic!)
vorarlbergtestet.lwz-vorarlberg.at/grafana/d/uEEQ… Image
🕵️Europol Warning👮

They think

🔸counterfeit, fake vaccines
🔸illegally refilling of empty vials
🔸hijacking and theft of vaccine transports

may be upcoming topics, now.
europol.europa.eu/newsroom/news/… Image
#Hildburghausen´s results from voluntary mass tests for teachers and students are in.

Out of 2.418 (rapid antigen) tests
15 were found to be currently infectious.

Note: tests took place over 1 week after schools had closed (so infection sources unclear).
Me, to a french colleague:
"Hey, quite impressive that #France brought down their incidence from ~500 down to ~100 in about 4 weeks!"

He, enraged:
"Bah, what you see is only half the truth - it´s due to reduced testing as well"...

😳 oh.
meteo-covid.com/test-covid19-s… Image
What ever they did, in the #Netherlands...
it causes the #COVID19 case numbers to surge back up again.

😕And this comes at a very bad time, right now...
nos.nl/artikel/235938… Image
Today is #Pakjesavond in the #Netherlands.
Families gather and Sinterklaas manages to deposit some presents, without anyone noticing how.

He has little helpers that take people with them in their sack, when they didn´t behave well.
This year,
that might actually come true...
What could be the reason for those re-surging numbers in the #Netherlands?

a.) that infamous #BlackFriday shopping chaos, one week ago
b.) the fact that since December 1st, #COVID19 tests are finally also accessible for contacts with no symptoms.
coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl/landelijk/posi… Image
last minute present shopping?

#Amsterdam tried to keep shopping masses at bay with a one-way system, today.
After one hour they gave up:

"We´re FULL.
Give up your shopping plan,
or go somewhere else !
Come another day,
come alone"
Dutch Railways (NS) is quite charming today...
"If you think it´s too full, just get off our bus!"

Really? - the guidelines for NL public transport were never changed back to some sort of distancing again?
(since July 1st. NL daily incidence was 0.4, then...)
🤷@Sustainable2050 ImageImage
This kid is a huge #Hayabusa2 Asteroid Explorer fan.
She went to see the capsule separation sequence at a public viewing.

She made herself a costume.
With solar panels.
That serve as social distancing guards as well.

(I see a future Nobel prize awaardee)
www3.nhk.or.jp/news/html/2020… Image
#Switzerland's ski ressorts are open again.

And it matches expectations.

The lift operator's comment:
"I can see nothing illegal here. The 1.5m distancing rule is not in force, yet..."
#Switzerland has decided rules for ski ressorts on December 4th.

But they will only come into force on December 9th.
Like: 1.5m distance &
"Closed cable car cabins may only be used to 2/3 capacity"
Until then, it's up to people's common sense
bag.admin.ch/bag/en/home/kr… Image
An alarm, that emerges all over #Japan, now:
medical personnel cannot cope anymore.

Osaka´s governour already asked other prefectures for help. They are stretched out, too.
So the military will try and see what they can do...
#Japan´s military will now (finally) see what they can do in Asahikawa as well.

2 hospitals asked for urgent support 2 weeks ago.
The city´s mayor found it "too difficult to decide" back then...

Each hospital has ~200 infections now (including staff)
A small island in #Japan´s north is experiencing a massive #COVID19 outbreak.
In a few days, 2% of their population (´only´ ~50 people) were found to be "positive".
They are transported to cities in Hokkaido, where they strain the regional health system...
Hokkaido can cope with the influx of infected islanders from Okushiri island, so far.

"but if additional local clusters would fill beds up..."
("...I think that could maybe cause panic" - he really said that)😳
www3.nhk.or.jp/sapporo-news/2… Image
The major city of Nagoya (West-Japan) has 297 #COVID19 beds.
But currently they can only operate 180 beds, due to shortage of medical personnel.

They already have 182 COVID-patients, so they started to transfer some to the smaller cities in the region.
Yes, measures do have economic impact

"Unfortunately, the current #COVID19 situation in Europe makes it unlikely that we would be able to create the necessary conditions to ensure the health and safety of our staff, participants and the broader community"
Of course,
you´ll have to read the whole text thoroughly.
But then you stumble upon

"With little evidence that schools contribute to higher rates of transmission"

that´s implying #schools suffer ´just the same transmission rate as anywhere´
"Case numbers in the #Netherlands are rising again.
Soon hospital admissions will rise, too..."

~"we thought we´d be able to have less strict rules by Christmas - we may need to abandon that idea, now..."
nos.nl/artikel/235967… Image
So the surge in incidence numbers (23.3↗️41) in the #Netherlands is not just caused by recently testing asymptomatic contacts (since December 1st)?

Test positivity was 11.1%, last tuesday.

There´ll be a new positivity index today.
Let´s wait and see...
coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl/landelijk/posi… Image
Germany´s national science academy #Leopoldina argues for a full #Lockdown (4 weeks, slow start next week).

Besides many scientific arguments, this one´s striking:
"in the last 7 days, Germany has seen more #COVID19 deaths than traffic fatalities in 2019"
leopoldina.org/uploads/tx_leo… Image
That escalated quickly:
#Saxony is the first state of Germany to announce a full scale #Lockdown.
They won´t have a "slow starting phase". From monday on
-non essential shops
are expected to be shut down until next year (January 10)
staatsregierung.sachsen.de/aus-dem-kabine… Image
More states of #Germany already signal readiness for #Lockdown.
But it seems they opt for the "slow start" after Christmas, especially to avoid "X-mas Panic Shopping"
(which would be far worse than #BlackFriday, I imagine...)
By the way:
#Netherlands´ disease center #RIVM just stated, that the current surge in NL´s #COVID19 incidence could be linked to:

a.) the #BlackFriday shopping craze (nov 27th) AND
b.) the new regime of testing asymptomatic contacts (since Dec 1st)
test positivity rate in the #Netherlands has indeed risen.
From 11.1 (last week) to 11.6% today.

That´s not much.
But definitely the wrong direction if you´d hoped to ease some COVID rules🙄
coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl/landelijk/posi… Image
It had been discussed for a long time in #Germany´s state of Baden-Württemberg - and it´s still very controversial:

Those who notoriously escape from #quarantine may soon be commited to special (guarded) quarantine institutions.
(like in AUS, NZ, TW,...)
You know,
Germany (so far): with a #Quarantine order you´re ought to stay in your home (in fact authorities are far too overwhelmed to control)

Taiwan: leave your quarantine room for 8 seconds and you´re screwed:
Appalling observation in #Switzerland:
-#COVID19 situation starts to deteriorate again
-case numbers start surging again
-intensive care is used to capacity
-medical personnel is exhausted

They held an extraordinary assembly, today...
"It's the first time, #Switzerland experiences a situation like this."
#COVID19 numbers are stagnating at high level. They are not decreasing, but are likely to go up again.

Swiss government is now proposing a (very mild) countrywide #Lockdown...
Switzerland's first steps:
-nearly everything will close daily, at 7 p.m.
-no public events

Sounds soft.
But: if numbers continue to rise next week (very likely), restaurants and shops might be closed entirely.
From tomorrow on, #Italy will apply new entry rules.
Transport carriers will be obligued to:

measure temperature of passengers
equip passengers with masks
verify COVID test certificates
operate at 50% capacity
refuse transport of non-compliant passengers
esteri.it/mae/resource/d… Image
While train operators from Austria and France comply with #Italy´s new entry rules, #Switzerland´s rail provider #SBB simply said:

No way.

Major european train lines will be cut at the border.
Train traffic to Italy is halted indefinitely.🤷
#Sweden's Stockholm Region just held a press conference.

It is said, the entire region's intensive care was nearly full.
"Today, there are 5 or 7 places left"...
#Sweden #COVID19
Stockholm Region:
"That´s basically all intensive care places we have..."

They have 89.
They were full. Image
Stockholm´s Health Director in a calm voice:
~"The health system still works because we do our outmost.

But this cannot go on.

This is enough now.
(Nu får det vara nog)

After work, coffee parties, crowds for Christmas shopping,...
That´s not worth it!"
In fact,
#Stockholm region has ~160 ICU beds.
~89 were filled with #COVID19 patients.

There are no additional beds.
The "normal cases" ICUs are also full.
(with operations, postponed from the first waves, etc.)
💈A heads-up to my hairdresser's other clients:

I took my #Aranet4 CO2 monitor with me for a haircut.

Maestro was shocked to see his thought-out aeration plan failed.
We spent an hour experimenting with windows.

He's happy now.

(Your next visit might be chilly,
💨❄⛄ Image
I´m worried about this tiny spot on the map.
Somehow, the virus has managed to enter the city of #Suhl.

Their incidence was 29.9, two weeks ago.
Today it´s 318.

Suhl is the most overaged city in entire Germany.
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… Image
You know:
the average age of the population in the city of #Suhl is:
~50.3 years (!)

We´re afraid of any #COVID19 outbreaks, there.
tlug-jena.de/uw_raum/umwelt… Image
Most of #Suhl´s #COVID19 cases seem to be in a nursing home, so far.

But what´s most worrisome:
a week ago, the city stopped keeping track of the number of contacts...
(it´s just "over 300", since then)

suhltrifft.de/content/blogca… Image
There was the idea to wait with #Lockdown until everyone has organized all their "necessary" X-mas shopping (after Christmas).
But Baden-Württemberg comes with a surprise move of "thinking about" locking down after this weekend.

😱🎁Panic this Saturday🙄
Surprise I:
Daytime movement restrictions will already be in force by TOMORROW.👍

Surprise II:
you can still practically do anything.
(including panic-shopping, if you´ve lost faith in announcements)🤪

(ONLY exception: "lingering around in the city")🤷
baden-wuerttemberg.de/de/service/all… Image
Surprise III:
Strict night curfew starts TONIGHT 24:00 (??)

"Hey folks,
I know, you just wanted to start your weekend.
But our hundreds of employees need to have their work-certificate/laissez-passer in hands TODAY!
Mind staying a few hours longer?

Stay strong💕
KlimaZen" Image
we still don´t have any official regulatory text.
No, we don´t even know, if we need to show a work-certificate
we do have crazy work hours (including weekend & nighttime)
we always try to do things right.

@RegierungBW drives us crazy.

Yes, it´s obvious.
Baden-Württemberg needs to act immediately.

Out of 2.900 ICU places,
2.363 (81%) are occupied today.

Last week, case numbers were ~3.000 per day.
Now we have 4.000 a day (+33%)
In ~3 weeks, ICU will rise by 33%, too.
That´s 107%, then.
gesundheitsamt-bw.de/lga/DE/Fachinf… Image
'If you meet with 5 persons, you need to stay indoors, in a private room.

If you thought it would make more sense to meet outside in public (you know, #Aerosol stuff),
forget it.
That's prohibited.'

That's #Maultaschen logic...
traditional meal in Baden-Württemberg.
Minced meat, wrapped in pasta, so that it is hidden and you can pretend to eat vegetarian....
It has cultural heritage status.

Also depicts: "If you do stupid stuff, we don't care if we can't see it".
Another formerly leading country
losing against #COVID19.

South Korea´s new cases jumped to 950 today. A new all-time record.
The day before it was 689.
(that´s +38% in one day)

Disturbing to see, where they got infected...
Much of South Korea was under "the second highest alert", but
"Despite the heightened social distancing, the volume of movement has not been reduced enough".

(Yesterday´s major clusters:
- restaurant
- church
- school
- office)

Yes, they are still open.
One example how South Korea lost it:

November 28th:
A restaurant in Seoul had a "performance" on stage.
Mask use was "insufficient". First case found.

14 days later,
that #Cluster has spread to
230 people. ImageImage
If a teenager tells you they can do things on their own,
without Interference from adults...
they're probably right so.

(Including their capability to spread the pandemic)
#Highschool #COVID19 #Cluster
Status report, from Baden-Württemberg (movement restrictions in force since this morning):
👍trams/ streetcars virtually empty
😣grannies and pops (unnecessarily) queuing for toiletpaper, as they believe all shops will close monday (wich had never been said, it´s what they think)
Frankfurt´s mayor just appologized:
"It wasn´t our intent to invite people to act recklessly"...

They promoted X-Mas shopping in the city´s centre by offering sponsored tram tickets today🚃🎫
"It was planned months ago. Now, I think it´s inappropriate"
The first night curfew approaches...
🕗😨 and time is flying!
Just over 2 hours left, until everyone in Baden-Württemberg needs to be at home!

Currently people start making emergency calls to police, to ask for advice😱📞...
1.5 hours left...🕗😰 #curfew

2 discounters,
just around the corner from each other.

(in case you´re in a hurry, that nifty feature of google maps would come in handy!)
google.com/maps/place/ALD… ImageImage
Silent night.
You can hear a falling leaf, when it hits the ground.
The nice side of curfew.😌
South Korea sees another record.
First time the country has more than 1.000 #COVID19 cases (1.030) in a day.

But they're still reluctant to switch to their highest alert (Level 3 should come into force if cases surge above 800)...
For now, South Korea's "3 week containment campaign"' is only about testing.
From monday they're rolling out free antigen-rapid tests, at 150 new test stations.

(they already calculate case numbers to virtually explode, due to increased testing)...
Rumours are:
#Germany might start a 3.5 week containment campaign on Wednesday.

It might close shops down, except supermarkets.

(⚠Monday, Tuesday will be murderous. People will go crazy for X-mas presents.
My advice: 🔖design a nice voucher instead!)
The Highschool #Cluster in South Korea isn´t spreding exclusively among the teenagers anymore.

Infections in the students´ families have been found, now.
facebook.com/covid19korea/p… ImageImage
The restaurant #Cluster in South Korea
(started 15 days ago with singing and "insufficient mask use")
has now reached into a care center...

Seems a singer-infected restaurant guest infected a family member, who works at the care center.
(275 cases now)
facebook.com/covid19korea/p… ImageImage
#Germany will have it´s #Lockdown.
Start: December 16
End: January 10 (as of now)

Schools, kindergartens will close
Mandatory rapid (antigen) tests for personnel in nursing homes
Yes, most shops will close. But many stay open: food, drinks, Xmas-trees,...
bundesregierung.de/resource/blob/… Image
Actually, the list of shops to stay open in #Germany´s #Lockdown is quite long.
But beware: it COULD be possible your supermarket will not be allowed to sell "non-food" items (like toys, etc.)!
Just saying.
(this might lead to absurd scenes, like it did in France...) Image
During the hard #Lockdown phase in #France, supermarkets had to cordon off "non-alimentary" goods.

The reason wasn´t that those goods were ´dangerous´.
It was an thought of as an act of "fairness" to those toy/ book/ etc. shops who had to close entirely.
South #Germany´s city of #Tübingen has used regular antigen tests for nursing home personnel since ~September. (Will come nationwide, now)

They claim this has prevented infections of elderly (while neighboring towns saw deadly nursing home outbreaks).
#Tübingen is focused on the "elderly risk group".

This went as far as saying:
"~We want schools to stay open.
This means kids will inevitably get infected.
But as far as we know, they will cope with it"

(this philosophy shows in today´s case numbers🙄)
tuebingen.de/28331.html#/28… Image
Jeetje !😯

Daily #COVID19 case numbers are back to ~10.000, in the #Netherlands !

They had a daily incidence of 23.2 (Dec 1st).
It´s at 57, today (it doubled ~10 days!).

(ICU occupation doesn´t fall any more, but sees slight rise as well).
coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl/landelijk/posi… Image
It seems the #Netherlands are deeply worried and contemplate stricter measures (especially closing shops).

That´s not so much because of the resurging NL case numbers.

The big worry is:
Germany´s #Lockdown might drive masses to NL for X-mas shopping...
Shopping areas in the #Netherlands have been crowded again, today.

So #Rotterdam applied several measures:
- one way pedestrian traffic
- temporarily no stepping off from trams in the city´s centre
A congestion-app for pedestrians !!!
app.spotrotterdam.nl Image
In Japan (the land of capsule hotels), an office space provider registred a surging demand for remote working places.

So they brought out capsule offices.

-recirculating aircons
-a communal space to have a drink with your colleagues

www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/ne… Image
You know a crisis is bad,
when you don´t even receive bad numbers anymore...

(Medical staff in Hokkaido is too busy with treating patients to enter data,
even data-input reinforcement sent from other regions is put on other duties)
In less than 48 hours "non-essential" shops all over Germany will close for ~1 month #Lockdown.

Politicians now appeal to shop-owners to keep shops open around the clock "until the last minute",
so people can shop Xmas presents without chaos...
Due to surging numbers (and fear of massive influx of german shoppers) the #Netherlands will also close all "non-essential" shops.

Start: tonight (midnight)!

(That's turning tables - now dutch shoppers will (potentially) rush to german shops, tomorrow)
#Belgium´s leading virologist calls on shoppers from the Netherlands "don´t come to us!"

This belgian website enjoys adding some "tit for tat" - they didn´t forget how Belgians weren´t welcome in some dutch cities, when shops in Belgium had been closed...
#Germany´s Ministry of Health:

Hey, seniors - you thought there´d be no reason to join the shopping chaos before #Lockdown?

Think again!
We will start GIVING AWAY FREE FFP2 masks !!!!

Starting TOMORROW at your local pharmacy.
Come and join !
bundesgesundheitsministerium.de/service/gesetz… Image
y´all need cheap clothes and cordless power drills...
🙄 Image
Santa Claus visited a nursing home in #Belgium.
He was a #Superspreader.

~60 elderly residents
~14 staff
have been found infected, so far.

He was wearing a mask.
But you know, he has a massive beard,
causing the mask to leak... (suspected outbreak cause)
Germany's "most important" hospital, Berlin's Charité,
is evaluating a larger transfer of non-COVID patients.
They would be transferred to other clinics, as far as 400 km away, to allow Charité to be dedicated to more #COVID19 patients.
This looks drastic:
The extreme east areas of #Germany suffer #COVID19 incidences above ~600.

One district´s ICU capacity (combined of 6 hospitals) is 179 beds.
150 of them are occupied by COVID ICU-patients.
experience.arcgis.com/experience/3a1… Image
One of the points that are said to have caused the immediate #Lockdown of the #Netherlands:

The test results were worrying.

Positivity rate had risen within a week.
And asymptomatic contacts had ~the same positivity as those with symptoms !
rijksoverheid.nl/documenten/rap… Image
Another worrying fact, leading to NL #Lockdown:

People didn´t seem to care anymore.
The green line shows "shopping movements".
By the end of November this had surged to ~2 times the movements of March.
(To the very end you can see the #BlackFriday peak) Image
Looks confusing.
But follow the green line.

It shows ICU admissions would surge to higher levels than in the 2nd wave
within ~2 weeks, if nothing would change.

Thus: immediate #Lockdown in the #Netherlands was decided. Image
#Switzerland's advisory #COVID19 Science Task Force calls for
swift measures

"There's no time to try out measures of unknown efficacy"

They're calling for a national
#Lockdown. Now.
New #COVID19 cases climb to record high in South Korea.
Fatalities follow suit...

(test positivity rate is at 2.27%, but rising)
South Korea's number of serious/critically ill #COVID19 cases jumped up ~10% (to 226) in a day...
South Korea's still tries to focus on:
✔securing more hospital beds
✔finding asymptomatic "hidden spreaders,"
❌instead of adopting Level 3 restrictions,
since tougher restrictions would cause economic damage.

(there's no X-mas/new year break, there!)
Remember "Dry Ice" is frozen CO2🤔
Those transport boxes are not gastight (for a reason).

You may want to have a CO2-meter at hand and proper ventilation (as you all do anyway✅)

And maybe not transport/store them in the back of your car... 🙄🌬️☠️
You know,
that "death by Dry Ice, transported in your car" story ain´t kidding.

It happened 7 years ago, to a well known cook in Germany...
(Yes, those containers were even less sealed.
So his ride ended after only 200 m...)
#COVID19 #Vaccine
#Japan had proclaimed a
"3 week battle to lower #COVID19 numbers".

This "battle" period has ended today.

The summary:
"It didn´t get much worse, so it must have helped..."
In fact, #Japan has finished its "3 week battle against #COVID19 numbers" with new record numbers.

Not only in #Tokyo, but also in Kanagawa, Aichi, Kyoto...
"the spread of infections continues to be unstoppable"
Worrying rumours from one hospital in #Germany´s extreme eastern district of Görlitz (Saxony)

It´s not sure what´s going on.
Are they "performing triage" on patients?
are they just "calling for help"?
are they just "overworked"?
are they "fearmongering"?
We don´t really know, what´s going on in #Germany´s Görlitz district (Saxony).
We don´t even really know what´s going on in the entire state of #Saxony.

They couldn´t manage to send updates to the national #COVID19 database...
(2 days ago - still influencing statistics, today) Image
Still, data crowdsourced by @risklayer (directly from local authorities) shows the situation in Saxony.

"Black" indicates a local 7-day incidence above 500 (up to ~680, right now).
risklayer-explorer.com/event/100/deta… Image
Not a rumour. It´s an official note.
(Mayor of Zittau, Görlitz district):

"We need urgent support to evacuate patients to other places.
Regional capacities are exhausted."

Incidence: just above 700, this noon.
Testing capacity overrun.
Surmortality: 25%
zittau.de/de/node/288959 Image
What Zittau´s mayor calls for is
activation of "Operation #Cloverleaf".

Germany´s central ICU coordinator #DIVI just confirmed:
Other regions can provide free beds
Interregional transfers of patients would be coordinated

"No need for triage right now."
divi.de/presse/pressem… Image
The #COVID19 situation in South Korea is
"prompting health authorities to seriously consider adopting the toughest virus curbs."
Just like it did yesterday.
(the current level of measures had been issued 9 days ago.
Maybe they hope effect will set in soon)
22 #COVID19 Fatalities in South Korea, today.

13 yesterday (was a record).

8 was the average of last two weeks.
Oh, sh*t !

SARS-CoV-2 traces in a city's wastewater are used as an early warning system for upcoming waves of #COVID19 infections.

In Gothenburg (#Sweden's 2nd largest city), those markers "exploded".
They have increased 100-fold in one week!

A week ago, Sahlgrenska hospital in #Gothenburg already asked everyone to avoid injuring themselves.

They suggested:
"-don't use your car
--don't go hiking in the mountains"

(They already experienced an increase in patients and more staff getting sick.)

The city of Hanau (#Germany) had installed a temporary freezer in their cemetery, back in April (during 1st #COVID19 wave).

2 days ago, all morgues in the city were at capacity limit.
The freezer is now used for the first time
(housing 2,
23 places left)
Still high case numbers, but
still no tougher measures in South Korea.

"We need to gather sufficient public consensus, as #Level3 (limiting assemblies to 10, closing schools & shops) would be meaningless without the public's participation"

Another state of #Germany has requested activation of "Operation #Cloverleaf".
Today, 51 patients from Brandenburg (mild #COVID19 cases) will be transferred to Berlin.

Brandenburg urgently needs space for more patients.
In Berlin, directorate of Charité clinic has communicated their sorrow the "#Cloverleaf" concept might soon stop working, as hospitals all over Germany will start to fill up.

They prepare to release as many patients as possible right now, to make room...
rbb24.de/politik/thema/… Image
In the wake of surging patient numbers, Baden-Württemberg in southwest #Germany has started to distribute #COVID19 ICU patients evenly across the state.

Today, 4 ICU patients from Heidelberg were transferred to Stuttgart and Ulm,
by Intensive-Care-Bus🚍
Due to foggy conditions, ICU transfers could not be done by helicopter.
So Red Cross Ulm dispatched their new Intensive-Care-Bus (said to be "world´s largest ICU on wheels").

Capacity: 4 fully supplied IC patients on ventilators + medical personnel.
Strong words for new measures in #Sweden:
"If shopping centres, stores and fitness gyms ignored the (new) maximum limit on people allowed in, then they would be closed down."

And, for the first time, facemasks are recommended(!) in public transport.
While #Sweden´s government announced new harsh measures to try and get #COVID19 numbers under control,
FHM (Sweden´s Health Authority) announced something else:

"Due to the holidays, we will only report numbers on 7 days in the coming 3 weeks. And they won´t make much sense"🙄😡 Image
So after 3 weeks opening up again, #Austria will go back into #Lockdown for 3 weeks...

This will start on Dec 24 (but only after re-opening ski resorts and enjoying Xmas parties with relieved restrictions...🤷)

A lot of confusing stuff, for now...🤔
"Six patients have died of #COVID19 while waiting for a place at a hospital"

vs. ongoing business as usual:

"Near 5-fold increase of infections at religious facilities"
"Ski resort caused chain infection"
"Offices hit particularly hard"
🤷 (South Korea)
Sweden´s leading epidemiologist argues:

"There´s still no scientific proof that masks would help - but with the current high spread of infections and heavy burden on healthcare,
we have to try everything we can"

"New variant 'really worrying'🤔
Government advisers "consider the new strain can spread more quickly".

A (new) fourth tier of coronavirus restrictions is expected to be introduced in London and south-east England...
"Up to 70% more transmissible..."
(raw results on the new virus variant in South/East England)
As the new variant still seems to be regionally confined (to London & south-east England), the aim is to keep it there as long as possible...

Essentially, that means: if you´re there, you´re expected to stay there:
The announcement of harsh measures to confine the outbreak of a new #COVID19 strain to south-east #England might also cause a reaction from #France.

The Eurotunnel is linking England´s outbreak area directly to Calais (and the rest of Europe)...
Problems at Eurotunnel were already huge, these days
(Not because of #COVID19, yet...)
Another convenient way to travel from #London to

🚄The EuroStar highspeed train.
It will keep operating, as they say,
even with London being "Tier4", due to find of the new variant strain of #COVID19.
As the #EuroStar website says:
France &
Belgium do not require passengers from the UK to quarantine
(for now.
Belgium was planning to change that anyway, soon...)
As for the Netherlands' quarantine:
they have a vast list of exemptions from quarantine.

(and: everyone in quarantine may "briefly go shopping")...

The #Netherlands just announced that they already had found one case with the new strain of #COVID19 (in early December).

And: from 06 a.m. this (sunday) morning, all passenger-flights from #UK will be refused.
Only flights are halted, so far.
NL government is ..."considering additional measures regarding other modes of transport.
Over the next few days, with other EU states, NL will explore the scope for further limiting the risk of the new strain of the virus being brought over from the UK."
the government of the #Netherlands states that the new strain of #COVID19

"is also harder to detect"

both, in dutch and english announcements.

(*IF* that would mean, tests couldn´t show it, that would be worrisome - but maybe it´s something else.)
government.nl/latest/news/20… Image
The House of Representatives in the #Netherlands was just informed by the Ministry of Health.

Looks like it is complicated to say *which strain* SARS-CoV-2 would be in a sample.
(But that doesn´t mean it´s difficult to detect that some strain is there)
rijksoverheid.nl/documenten/kam… Image
🤣"Of course. It’s the police’s responsibility..."
"New virus strain already in every part of Wales"

makes the idea of using police to stop individuals from packing their car and leaving London sound somewhat ´disproportionate´...
The flight bans look like a swift solution...
(but remember: NL has already confirmed they had one case of the new #COVID19 strain in their country ~2-3 weeks ago).
And there´s also ferries, the Eurotunnel,...

(Might be we´re too late, again).
Passenger traffic (flights, Eurostar trains) from UK will be banned to enter #Belgium from tonight (midnight).
Quarantine for those who arrive today.

The ban is only for 24 hours, so far.
(Also: talks with France to control roads from Calais to Belgium)
vrt.be/vrtnws/nl/2020… Image
The article from Belgium also states, the new SARS-CoV-2 strain had also been discovered ealier:

in Belgium
in Denmark
in Australia
(only a few cases,
not that massive spread as it is found in England, right now)
vrt.be/vrtnws/nl/2020… Image
#Italy now:
"As a government we have the duty to protect Italians. For this reason, after having notified the English government, we are about to sign the order to suspend flights with Great Britain."
#ECDC has just published a first Threat Assessment of the new #SARSCoV2 strain.

🔎"Ongoing circulation of this variant outside of the UK cannot be excluded"

(because other countries don´t do genetic analyzing as much as UK, we might just not know it...)
UK´s raw version of the new #SARSCoV2 strain´s Threat Assessment:

"R increased between 0.39 and 0.93"😧
(so ~0.4 was *optimistic*)

"can be challenging to sequence" (aha!), so spread may be underestimated.

"Antigenic escape"...
"Antigenic escape"
So that´s why ECDC has this chapter in their Threat Assessment.

They want to keep an eye on
-treatment failures with antibodies
-vaccine failure

which would indicate that old strain immunity doesn´t help against the new!
ecdc.europa.eu/sites/default/… Image
They´re not going on holidays.
Look at the amount of luggage.
It is an exodus.
#Germany´s ban on flights from #UK
comes into force tonight (midnight).
Soon, there will be restrictions to ALL forms of travel from UK (and South Africa).

(maybe tests and quarantine? Not sure yet.
It will be decided tomorrow...)
Link to Germany´s UK flight ban (full document, in german)
on this site:
#France announces a TOTAL travel ban for passengers coming from the #UK.
Starting tonight at midnight.
They emphasize that this is a TEMPORARY measure.
(for 48h, so far)
NOTE: All the other travel bans UK->EU are temporary, too.
That 48 hours of total travel ban will be used to elaborate a coordinated response of all EU members.

(Travel UK->EU might be possible again,
conditions apply...)
looks like a negative PCR test might be necessary to enter #France from the #UK.

(NOTE: there´s some hint that this might only apply to french nationals.🤔
Sounds weird, but they suggested this earlier for french ski-tourists, returning from CH, too)
IPCR: "integrated political crisis response"
All affected EU member states, relevant institutions will start their meeting on the "New Virus Strain in the UK & travel (and Brexit?)" tomorrow, 11 a.m.
#Italy has detected its first carrier of the new virus strain.
A passenger who arrived from the #UK, a few days ago.
He came by plane, landed in Rome´s Fiumicino airport.

He´s in quarantine at the moment.
Italy is now rolling out mandatory tests for everyone who has been to UK in the last 14 days...
Tonight, #France has published a clarifying announcement:

▫️Travel from #UK is expected to resume December 22.

▫️Then, a negative PCR test will have to be provided upon DEPARTURE

There´s some "privilege" for french nationals
(what ever that means...)
uk.ambafrance.org/All-travel-fro… Image
"Privilege" in #Germany, Berlin-style
(when the last flights from UK arrived, the passengers were ´triaged´...
Some were ´qualified´ to leave without a test, go home by train and have their test arranged later...🙄)
#Germany, again: No privilege at Hannover airport

All passengers of #UK flight isolated in terminal building.
Emergency services hastily prepared a mass PCR testing station.
Everyone needs to stay, until test results are in (that´ll take hours)...
The Netherlands with strictly no privilege

ALL passenger transport from UK is banned until January 1st.
Stranded dutch nationals are advised to look for accomodation in UK - there will be no way home.
(Except for lorry drivers. Goods traffic not affected)
rijksoverheid.nl/actueel/nieuws… Image
British Transport Minister´s warning tonight:
Do not travel to Kent in hope to get to France...
"Operation Stack":
All lorries are ordered to park on the motorway.
The cargo traffic on the UK side is piled up to a length of 25 miles, at the moment.
(that´s ~40 km of trucks)
The new strain of #SARSCoV2 has made its way from #UK to #Australia, now.
Authorities stress out, that the current outbreak in Sydney is NOT related to this new strain.
Everyone in #NSW is now being asked to wear a mask.
And get tested & isolate, if even the slightest symptoms of possible #COVID19 occur...
#Germany´s state of North Rhine-Westphalia (#NRW) issued a ´Test & Quarantine´ ordonance for travellers from UK and South Africa, tonight.

It applies to those who arrived in the past 10 days.
(AND: it can be seen as a draft of HOW TRAVEL CAN RESUME SOON).
land.nrw/de/pressemitte… Image
The new #UK / #ZA travel ordonance in Germany´s #NRW sounds practical:
1.) PCR Test presented or done at arrival
2.) quarantine at home (10 days)
3.) a 2nd PCR test after 5 days (if it says "negative", you´re cleared and free)

😏there´s a story to that...
mags.nrw/sites/default/… Image
Those "new" ´Test & Quarantine´ rules in #NRW had been in force before,
until - exactly 1 month ago - one eager traveller complained and caused courts to dump the whole system.😡

Since then, the paperwork still existed, but enforcement was suspended.

(Screenshot of 2020-11-20:) Image
Remember those #UK - #Germany flight passengers who were held isolated in the terminal building at Hannover airport until their test results came in?

Test results are here:
One is #COVID19 "positive"...
hannover.de/Leben-in-der-R… Image
#Switzerland has a very simple "test"
for travellers from UK and South Africa:
A look at your passport!🛂

Swiss passport: you´re welcome to quarantine at home🇨🇭

Foreign passport: entry denied.🤷

(🤔no fancy PCR testing or such stuff...)
The #Netherlands decided to resume helicopter transfers of some #COVID19 patients to #Germany.

It´s been ~2 months, since the last such transfer.

Now, intensive care occupancy is slowly running high in NL. Staff is getting more and more exhausted...
Updated numbers of infected passengers:

Of those on last flights #UK-#Germany,
this night
at least 12 were now found #COVID19 "positive"

Hamburg: 7 passengers
Frankfurt: 4
Hannover 1
(so far...
Unclear if any are infected with the new variant of Virus)
It took a while, but now #Sweden also bans entry from the #UK.
And while they´re at it, they also ban entry from #Denmark, for a month.

Reason: malls in Denmark are closed and shoppers would flock to Sweden instead (and bring the new virus variant, maybe)
other regions of #UK start quarantining guests/travellers who managed to get out of #Tier4 areas/Wales (where the new Virus strain is believed to spread heavily)...
Director of Public Health:
“The new strain of Covid, which is increasingly rapidly in Tier 4 areas, is extremely worrying.
It is incredibly infectious and if you come in to contact with someone with this strain you are far more likely to catch it than the original strain."
🙄 Image
Herefordshire is one of a few regions in #UK with quite low #COVID19 rates.
That means: pubs are open.

Police had to turn away hundreds of non-local visitors (from up to 200 miles away), this weekend
Update on the spread of the new #SARSCoV2 variant:

Besides UK, infections have been found in:

(according to a #WHO announcement this afternoon)
The new #SARSCoV2 variant was found in
"Single cases in Australia, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands

Denmark had found ~10 cases"
No progress in resuming travel & transport through the Eurotunnel.

#France insists on test for every truck driver.

#UK says tests would be impossible and unnecessary,
as lorry drivers would practically be isolated in their cabins, with low infection risk
Truck driver's reality, travelling through Eurotunnel:

All drivers must leave the trucks and take seat in a "club car" (fire safety reasons)
Drivers are transported by bus from/to their trucks

That lasts ~2 hours

Testing might be a good idea, I suppose.
That was the first time, mass tests on asymptomatic public were performed in UK.
They used rapid (antigen) tests, roughly meaning only those who were currently able to infect others had a "positive" result.

They found this would apply to ~2% of the tested
IF investigations would show the new variant is more adapted to children, this
▫️"could alter the role children, and schools, play in spreading the virus."
▫️"might explain a significant proportion... of the transmission increase seen"
Still no move.
France still insists, all truck drivers must have a #COVD19 test.

Some movement:
the trucks are now being moved from the motorway to a dedicated parking lot.

In fact it´s Manston Airport.
The tarmac is used for parking up to 4.000 trucks.
The reqeuest for #COVID19 tests is not only for truck drivers.
Even french nationals who wish to return to #France from #UK would need to present a negative PCR test.
(French Minister for EU affairs made that clear, yesterday):
Fun fact:
▶️there is already a drive-through #COVID19 PCR testing site at Manston Airport (stacking site for all the stranded trucks)...

It was installed in July and has been in daily operation, since then.
(Obviously it´s meant for cars, not trucks...)
It seems some progress is being made...
"Lateral flow tests" being rapid (antigen) tests.

Not perfect,
and still nothing but rumours.
#UK #France #COVID19
So here´s the EU move:
(Rapid antigen) tests for truck drivers are okay, as long as that doesn´t lead to disruptions of transport.

🤔With some effort, this should be doable...
(Tests while waiting for onboarding, etc)
ec.europa.eu/commission/pre… Image
and bold😠 Image
so Germany´s state of #Saxony is regarded as a high-risk area.
Even by #Switzerland´s standards!
bag.admin.ch/bag/en/home/kr… Image
Meanwhile at #UK Manston Airport,
the huge parking lot where thousands of trucks wait for #EU borders to reopen.

(If you think it´s a quiet evening there, you forgot to
Now, the #UK Road Haulage Association shows they care:

They don´t like #COVID19 tests for several reasons.

One being:
"😢A driver with a positive test, where will he go?
He will be unable to quarantine with his family in #Europe..."

🙄Lovely thought
rha.uk.net/news/press-rel… Image
On the other hand...

an update from Dortmund, #Germany.

´Test results for passengers of last flights from #London to Dortmund are in.
6 of them were #COVID19 "positive".´

Oh, yes - they will be allowed to quarantine with / infect their families...😩
I can totally imagine,
telling one of these truck drivers
"Er, sorry chap - your #COVID19 test is positive... you need to stay 10 days in your cabin"
is not deemed a smart thing by most of them.
News from France:

"Travel #UK - #France will resume tomorrow.
A #COVID19 test (PCR or rapid test) will be required."

Applicable to:
▫️French and European nationals
▫️British and third-country nationals who are permanent residents
(no details, yet)
French Transport Minister:
planes, ships and Eurostar train are going back into service #UK - #France tomorrow morning.
Those with "legitimate reasons" will be allowed to travel, too.
(Of course: with a negative #COVID19 test.)
The #UK NHS #COVID19 testing team has arrived in Dover.
They will need some healthy sleep.
There´s a lot to do, tomorrow...
Special mention:
The Sikhs in Kent have been up to help since this morning!
Preparing and providing ~800 hot meals. Choice of pasta or curry/rice.😋
As well as other volunteers, salvation army, fire service did their best...
Today, 2 cases of infection with the new #SARSCoV2 strain have been reported from the #Netherlands.

They are both in Amsterdam region, but don´t seem to be connected.
One has been to #UK.
The other wasn´t .
In the late evening,
rules for resumption of passenger traffic #UK - #France were published.

Not everyone is allowed to travel,
but everyone who is allowed, must present a negative #COVID19 test.

#France will accept some rapid (antigen) tests / (Lateral Flow Tests).

"In the absence of PCR tests, antigen tests sensitive to the VUI-2020-12-01 test will be authorized; see the list of these below."
While passengers would need to provide their own negative #COVID19 test results (therefore could start earlier),
The tests for the stuck lorry drivers will be provided by authorities (therefore travel resumed at 7 a.m.)
#UK Port of Dover says to have restarted operations for both, passengers & freight shortly before midnight.

(provided anyone could present a negative #COVID19 test)...

doverport.co.uk/about/news/por… Image
On the move, though:
the new #SARSCoV2 variant is said to have been detected in further #UK regions...
Yesterday, #Belgium announced that ~3 weeks ago, they had found four #COVID19 cases, infected with the new "UK" variant.

It´s a family of 4.
They didn´t get infected via UK,
but one family member had been to Zeeland (#Netherlands), where he was infected".
Interestingly, #Belgium´s test positivity rate keeps declining.
Even after the first cases of new "UK" #SARSCoV2 variant had been detected (early december).

Seems, just the presence of this new strain doesn´t say much...
hln.be/binnenland/ove… Image
The latest guess is ~10.000 trucks (drivers) need to be tested.
(~2% would be #COVID19 "positive", if we´d take latest mass testing of population in #Kent as a guideline).

Not to mention those in the minivans, discovering a co-passenger was "positive"...
Dover ferry service DFDS confirmed it had the capacity to carry 4,000 freight vehicles by Christmas Day...
(there are ~10.000 waiting right now)
The military will help with the tests...
The military is said to go and test the drivers stuck on the motorway M20.
For those at Manston airport, tests are said to finally begin... soon.
That´s chaotic (I)
Port of Dover is sending everyone to Manston Airport (which is ful), to get tested there.
This has provoked a bit of disconcent among drivers already waiting at the Port of Dover...
That´s chaotic (II)
So if some drivers had followed the appeal to leave their spot at Port of Dover to head for Manston Airport and queue up for a test...

that discontent might have grown, now.
The test centre at Port of Dover is not there, yet.
It´s a plan.

If it is installed ...
"it will be many hours, into days, just to get rid of what we see just around the Dover area".
Every mooring at the Port of Dover has a ferry waiting to bring cargo & passengers to France.
They have been waiting since this morning.

No truck (driver) with a #COVID19 test has made it here...
skylinewebcams.com/de/webcam/unit… Image
ANOTHER new (South Africa) variant has reached UK.
"This virus is yet more transmissible and appears to have mutated further than the new virus.

Anyone who has been in South Africa in the past fortnight and close contacts must quarantine immediately!"
bbc.com/news/live/worl… Image
The South Africa variant has (so far) only been found in 2 cases in the UK.
That´s not the one causing the surge, for the moment.
Nice move!
Some bits of official information on #COVID19 testing for border crossings #UK to #France are now available in foreign languages!
(They don´t have all the information like where you can get the test,
but it´s a start...)
I think it´s getting really screwed up now...

(Ferries from #France cannot unload at #Dover,
as the entire port, city, region is blocked.

So they have to wait at sea or return to France, with passengers and cargo)
🛳️🔄 Image
Strong commitment, detailed facts research, a bit of authentic compassion...
telling the story, not boosting a headline.
I´d say they have a very good journalist, there.
There are now 3 ferries at once heading out from Calais to Dover...

Thinking about how there were convoys of ships crossing the Channel 80 years ago, 76 years ago...
it comes to my mind how blessed we still are.
(via vesselfinder.com) Image
That´s a ~20km long stretch of motorway, used as additional parking lot.
Actually, it´s that roadside that was left open, while trucks were stacked on the "coast bound" lanes.

It´s completely blocked, now.
This isn´t "Operation Stack/Brock" anymore.
"The ´UK´ #SARSCoV2 variant appears to be unstoppable" in the #Netherlands.

So far, it was only found in 2 cases. Both had no contact with each other, and had not been to UK.
The infections came up 10 days apart, suggesting there might be other carriers.
Dover #COVID19 testing
arrived from France...
If ferries sail tomorrow, it will be because of crews and port staff who volunteer to do so.
Normally, ports would be closed for Christmas.

(see planned timetable below,
it´s outdated, for sure)
A polish truck driver passing the test zone in the Port of Dover.

(Don´t get the ironical sign wrong - they are all really p***ed.
"This #COVID19 thing is not a big deal. All this is just about politics" is heard in interviews. And they all blame France.)
Yes, there was a study (pre-) published yesterday.
"Schools may need to close to control new #SARSCoV2 variant"
is not what it actually concludes...
The study on measures against the new ´UK´ #SARSCoV2 strain suggests it would need:
🔹#Tier4 rules England-wide
🔹Schools closed until February
and 🔹*2 million persons vaccinated per week*⚠️

to keep numbers below peak scenarios of earlier waves.
cmmid.github.io/topics/covid19… Image
#Poland´s tweet suggests they will send Polish medical personnel to #UK, to provide #COVID19 tests exclusively for Polish truck drivers.

Let´s see how this will work out... Image
First "official" results of one day #COVID19 testing for truck drivers are in.

(Together with commentary from #UK´s Secretary of Transport, that ~it all would not be worth the hassle~.)

3 / 2367 tested "positive"...
So, what´s the use of rapid tests?

A first case of infection with "#UK´s" #SARSCoV2 variant was found in #Germany, today.
A passenger, who came on one of the last flights from London (sunday, Dec 20).
She recieved a rapid test at the airport: positive...
Due to the "positive" rapid test result, that UK-flight passenger was sent to quarantine,
*picked up by relatives, then a ~2 hour ride to the relatives´ home, where she isolated herself*

Not much more interaction, so "only" 3 contacts, now.
#B117 #Germany
In Poland, a Christmas dinner table will always have an extra plate.🎄🍽️
It is a symbol of hope.
In the darkest times of Poland, families prepared this extra plate in case a member of the family came back from captivity…
More military from the UK,
to test the truck drivers...
This evening, several planes stated from #Poland.
They will land at London Gatwick, #UK.

One plane carries 16 #COVID19 test teams.
Their mission: testing Polish truck drivers (and those of other ´Visegrad´-countries).
"Capacity: 5.000 tests per day"
Another plane from #Poland brings (even more) rapid antigen tests to #UK,
to be used for testing Polish (and V4) truck drivers.
And Polish military is also preparing to be deployed at testing sites in #UK, as well as catering for Polish truck drivers stuck at the border in Kent.
#Japan´s #COVID19 numbers are still rising.
Today, Tokyo saw a new record of 888 new cases.

One of them is a returnee from #UK...

And one transmission happened, while 2 men sat in a car, just for one lunchbreak....
2 UK residents who were tested #COVID19 "positive" in #Switzerland, have now been found to carry the #B117 variant strain.

One is in isolation.
The other one... well, local authorities are "trying to contact them".

Medical Teams from #Poland have already started testing stranded truck drivers in #Dover.
It is expected that Polish military forces will arrive this morning for additional support.

Polish Consulate clarified they will test drivers of all nationalities.
ALL international travellers to the #Netherlands will need to provide a negative #COVID19 test result.

-rapid tests not accepted!
-a 10 day quarantine is also mandated

-does not apply to local cross-border travel
-and not for freight transport personnel
government.nl/latest/news/20… Image
Changing of the guards...

A new crew of firefighters from #France is now on their way to #Dover to take over #COVID19 testing from their colleagues who went there yesterday.
Apparently, there´s one major difference between french tests and UK-style testing.

Firefighters from #France strictly follow the manufacturer´s guideline.
They take swab samples from the "posterior nasopharynx".
That´s halfway through one´s head...🗣️🔚📏
Rapid tests from #UK crews will strictly be "self administered" (done by the testees themselves, under supervision).
They will not insert the swab deeply (might be risky with layman´s hands😤), but brush the cheeks and the nostrils in front of the nose...
The #UK way of applying rapid (antigen) tests is therefore deviating from manufacturers´ instructions.

"They do not need to be followed",

says a Standard Operation Procedure of UK´s NHS.
england.nhs.uk/coronavirus/wp… Image
#UK´s medical product authority had issued an
"authorisation for exceptional use"
of these rapid (antigen) / #LFT kits as a
"Self-Test device, to be used by members of the public"
on December 23.
gov.uk/government/new… Image
The medical crews from #Poland also seem to follow the manufacturers´ instructions for rapid (antigen) test kits.

Would be interesting to see if there will be any differences in UK vs. PL/F test result-quota🤔
Japan confirmed, 5 flight passengers who arrived last weekend and tested "positive" do carry infections with the new "UK" variant #B117

They came from UK and had landed in Osaka and Tokyo.
Since their positive test upon arrival, they´d been in quarantine.
4 other cases in Japan, more worrying:
3 flight passengers from UK. They all tested "negative" upon arrival and went home.
As they later developped symptoms, it was discovered the infection had already spread to a family member.
Not yet clear if it´s #B117
New ´official´ numbers from the truck drivers´ tests in UK.
(positivity rate "just" doubled in a day. it was ~0,12%, yesterday)...🤔

(Couldn´t they also be given another self-test kit,
to let them check again, when they arrive at home?
It´s ~5€ !)
The "UK" variant #B117 has now been detected in #Ireland.
"Further testing in the coming days and weeks will establish the extent to which it is present here."

Ireland currently has the fastest growing incidence rate in the EU.
Authorities in the #Netherlands already suspected there´d be more than just the 2 cases of the "UK" variant #B117 they had found around Amsterdam.

They were right.
Another case was just found in Rotterdam region...
A Frenchman, residing in #London
arrived in #France Dec19
went to hospital in Tours Dec21 and got tested (unclear reasons). Result "positive".
Sequencing now showed: #B117

He´s isolated (at home)

Several more suspect cases are currently being sequenced
france24.news/en/2020/12/the… Image
South Korea,
still a typical #COVID19 transmission chain, these days:

Automobile factory employees
restaurant employees
restaurant clients

26 cases confirmed, so far.
South Korea sees record #COVID19 case numbers around 1.000 since 2 weeks.

They are still hesitating to implement tougher measures, as they would have economic consequences.

(meanwhile: massive clusters in nursing homes, hospitals, detention center,...)
An airline pilot in #Japan has just been confirmed to carry the "UK" virus variant #B117.
He had been to #UK.

At home in Japan, his wife has also been found #COVID19 "positive".
Sequencing is done to see if she is also infected with the new variant.
It looks as if the #B117 infected pilot in Tokyo is one of the cases who were asymptomatic (and thus untested) upon arrival in Japan.
He arrived on Dec16, went home.
Tested positive Dec22,
Another family member (not been to UK) was found positive on Dec24
a little Update:
"UK" variant in JP
It has been confirmed that the #B117 infection of an airline pilot had been transmitted to one of his family members, back home in #Japan.

(after his return from UK, his infection went unnoticed for ~6 days, Dec16 - 22)
The case history
(Ministry of Health, #Japan):

Pilot returned home to Tokyo from #UK, December16🟢
Felt mild symptoms Dec21🔵

Family member felt symptoms Dec23🟡

Both in hospital (for managed isolation) since Dec24
Confirmation: both carry #B117, Dec26
mhlw.go.jp/stf/newpage_15… Image
UK: #Manston airport truck holding area now cleared. Quite some trucks still stacked on the motorway #M20, waiting to cross the border to France with a #COVID19 rapid test...
(although there are still red markers on the map, indicating there´d be heavy traffic. Everyone´s gone).
trafficcameras.uk/map/ Image
#UK #France #Border #Truckdrivers
And the "officially commented by traffic secretary" test results are in:
15.526 tests
36 positive

(rapid antigen test,
positive results still need to be verified by PCR apparently)
As countries over the world start discovering imported "UK" variant infections, #Japan closes its borders🛑

From monday on,
all foreigners are banned from entering the country.

Nationals and residents may return with a negative test result & quarantine.
#Sweden has also found one person infected with #B117.

A traveller from #UK went to see his family in Sweden.
He arrived Dec20 and began to feel symptoms.
He performed a #COVID19 self-test: "Positive".

The family was tested, too - all negative, so far...
All authorities say the risk that #B117 would spread from the first case in #Sweden was VERY low.
"He behaved exemplary, even before he felt symptoms".

(He came from UK in a big car.
All the time wearing masks and vizors.
And the windows down...🚙🌬️🥶)
Sorry, could anyone correct me if I´m wrong...?

The story that #Sweden´s first #B117 case came by car with windows down, from #UK, was found here🔎:
svt.se/nyheter/lokalt… Image
#Spain announces 4 cases of infections with the "UK" Variant #B117 in Madrid.

One is a flight passenger who arrived from UK on Dec20.

(and then it gets a bit confusing...)
One young man arrived by plane from UK in Madrid, mid last week.
His rapid antigen test upon arrival was "positive".

Apparently he was sent to isolate at home🤷

...now, cases 2,3&4 are his family in Madrid.
They showed symptoms this week.
#B117 in #Spain
#Madrid´s Vice Counselor for Health (and pandemic planning) tweeted about the 4 cases of #B117
something like:

"~It´s not that bad. Don´t panic~"
😎 Image
#Switzerland´s authorities are in holiday mode.
So there´s no official statement yet, just an article:

now, there are 3 cases of #B117 in CH.
All are visitors from UK.

Contacts are checked.
"In this special case even contacts of contacts are traced..."
Oh, #Canada!
"The confirmed (#B117) cases identified are from a couple from Durham Region with
NO known travel history, exposure or high-risk contacts.
Durham Region is east of Toronto."
When #B117 is not a big deal - Australia-style:

"Since March, all international travelers arriving in #Australia have been required to undergo government mandated 14 day #Quarantine"
When #B117 is no big deal - #Sweden-style:

"Unaware" of the entry ban, one flight from London still landed in Stockholm

No authorities made contact with the 29 passengers.
"Self-Test & Self-isolation responsibility lies with the travellers themselves"
#Sweden´s approach to #COVID19 is very much 🥳

After his forces were "totally surprised" by flight passengers arriving from UK,
Sweden´s Head of National Border Police tweeted this...
(although I´d agree that the word "Mutantvirus" is silly, too)
#Sweden´s Head of Border Police is much more🕵️‍♂️in saying:
"Swedish citizens always have the right to enter the country."
(They still can do it by car...)
Quarantine is at home, not at the border.
And the standard protocol asks them to covid-test themselves.
A serious approach on #B117:

When last flights from UK arrived a week ago, Italy´s #Campania region tested all passengers...

7 out of 245 passengers turned out to be #COVID19 "positive".
They then started *testing all UK arrivals* since 14 days before...
...samples of those who tested "positive" in the large ´UK arrival backwards screening´ were then sent to #TIGEM institute for sequencing.

Results are out now...
6 of them carried the #B117 variant.
#TIGEM didn´t sequence only UK travllers, but also other positive cases in the region.

They created a "map" of the different occuring virus variants in #Campania *at that moment*

Out of 115 positive #COVID19 cases,
six (5.2%) carried the #B117 variant.
corrieredelmezzogiorno.corriere.it/napoli/cronaca… Image
(Note: break of quarantine costs 10.000 CHF🇨🇭)

"200 Brits disappear overnight"
after #Switzerland had ordered them to quarantine at their hotels.

"Some reported they´d be in #France, now..."

This will get nasty, soon...🤦
(if all of this is true)
A text message from #Switzerland´s authorities had informed #UK travellers of their obligation to quarantine for 10 days at their hotel.

Identity and contact data of all (also all escaped) travellers is known to swiss authorities...
Local🇨🇭authorities tried to arrange flights back home for #UK Tourists,
but when it turned out the passengers needed to prove completed quarantine, the guests declined.

Some CH locals now mistake resident Brits for tourists and start harassing them...
Regional president of Valais:

"I suppose they´ll be in London now, in quarantine"
"You can´t control every single one"

´Of 420 #UK guests who should quarantine in Verbier / Bagnes, only ~a dozen is still there´...
Regional president of Valais (#Switzerland), in an interview:

"I can´t tell you the numbers. Certainly, some have vanished ...
Federal authorities didn´t hand us over relevant data in time, so we didn´t know who had to quarantine"
Meanwhile, in #London:
🚑Ambulance crews waiting ~6 hours to hand over patients to hospitals.

"The demand is occurring because of the rapid spread of the new variant, predicted to spread further across the rest of the capital in the coming days and weeks"
#Canada´s ´mysterious´ first 2 cases of infection with the #B117 variant
seem to have been infected by a traveller from #UK.
The secret of the missing Brits...
"Some have returned by own means,
some have taken a return-flight organised by #UK for their nationals..."
Says president of #Switzerland´s Valais.

(in bad Skype quality, but with subtitles it´s comprehensible)
rts.ch/play/tv/redire… Image
#Switzerland detected
3 "UK" variant #B117 carriers, in:
Zurich, Grisons, Liechtenstein

2 "South Africa" variant #501V2 carriers.
One is in Schwyz.
The other one is currently in .... #France (?!!!)
bag.admin.ch/bag/de/home/da… Image
The "UK" variant #B117 was detected in a family who had returned to South Korea from UK on Dec22 (3 family members).

There are investigations if an earlier #COVID19 case (also returnee from UK, spreading to his family in S Korea) also carried this variant
From #Lockdown to #Gridlock.

#Italy has issued a national ~2 week lockdown period during year´s end holidays.
There are only 3 days with open shops (starting today)...

and then it snowed !
google.de/maps/@45.53025… Image
What happens, if a person received an #overdose of Biontech/Pfizer´s COVID #vaccine?🤔

That just happened in #Germany:

8 nurses accidentally received 5 times the prescribed dose (entire bottle in 1 shot!)🙄
-flu-like symptoms
-observation in hospital🤒
The "UK" variant #B117 is here and there and everywhere...

The #Netherlands have found 11 carriers, so far.

Only *one* isolated case in Nijmegen had been to #UK, recently. He has no connection to the other cases...
For 5 of #Netherland´s #B117 infections, a connection could be found:

They are linked to a very unusual, LARGE outbreak at an ELEMENTARY #School (in Rotterdam)
40 infected teachers AND #STUDENTS, there - since end of November.
Mass sequencing has started.
Netherland´s #RIVM already did a first screening of 250 earlier #COVID19 cases in Rotterdam region.

They found
´more than 95% of those cases were NOT the "UK" variant´ #B117...

They´ll continue screening with more samples...
rivm.nl/nieuws/verspre… Image
The "UK" variant #B117 has also been detected in #Germany, again.

An elderly man had died from it, end November.
His wife was also infected.
They had not been to UK.

But their daughter had returned from UK mid-November.
#Denmark is ramping up its search for the "UK" variant #B117 in their country...
(Link to document: ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede…)
Based on their mass sample sequencing,
#Denmark states:
- #B117 was found in all regions
- mid November: around Copenhagen
- Since December: North Jutland🤔🐿️
- Signs of community spread, but still at low level

(Auto-translated version:) Image
Tokyo has so far had ~57.000 #COVID19 cases.
~1 % of them are under treatment for #LongCovid.

of which
97% feel exhausted
86% depression
73% breathing problems
52% hair loss
27% taste disorders

114 of them can´t get out of bed for at least half of week.
www3.nhk.or.jp/news/html/2020… Image
The case of vanishing Brits from #Verbier shows a chaotic picture of #Switzerland:
Local spokesman
"Regional & federal authorities gave them authorisation to leave"
"After all, it´s the federals´ business to manage quarantine"

(🇨🇭Federal authorities deny)
rts.ch/play/tv/19h30/… Image
On December 22 (a day after the mandatory quarantine for all who arrived from #UK since Dec14 came into force)
#Switzerland´s TV did an interview with Brits in #Verbier:

"We have to stay inside. So we´re actually going to go home tomorrow"...
facebook.com/srfnews/videos… Image
#UK´s secretary of transport has published new "official" test results and comment for truck drivers, trying to cross the border to #France:
21.849 Tests, "just" 66 of them tested positive (0,3%)

(Note: that´s with rapid antigen tests!)
#UK´s truck driver tests (0,3% positive)
(unfairly) compared to (voluntary) rapid antigen mass testing in #Austria

(0,1%-0,5% positive
~3 weeks ago,
when Austria´s test positivity with PCR tests was ~14%)
de.statista.com/statistik/date… Image
#Switzerland´s National #COVID19 Science Task Force presents a model, how case numbers would behave, if new Virus variants (#B117, #501v2) would kick in.
(Despite current measures...)
#Switzerland (if virus variants would spread)
Case number development with
measures, currently good for R=0.9 (orange)
measures, currently good for R=0.8 (blue)
real R is currently ~0.9 but not reliable (holiday effects)

Dotted line: enhanced Tracing/Testing/Isolation/Quarantine Image
"On Dec21, when a text message from Swisscom went out to travellers and news started to break of the new rules, 🔹#Switzerland´s authorities gave #Brits the option to return home rather than quarantine🔹"

Exactly what Ischgl (AT) did earlier...
wheretoskiandsnowboard.com/blogs/what-rea… Image
"Infections started slowly - but when it suddenly started to spread at great speed, we decided to close the #School completely"

"Until then, we hadn´t seen any large #Cluster in elementary schools"

It´s #B117. But still no link to #UK, so far.
Another case of infection with #B117 in #Germany.

A man from North Rine-Westphalia got infected (and recovered) at the beginning of December.
His infection has no links to #UK.

"He was infected by a colleague from #CzechRepublic ..."
presse-service.de/data.aspx/stat… Image
"On December 22 at 6:35 am, a Chilean passenger arrived on a flight from Madrid and was PCR-tested at the airport. She had spent a week in #London visiting relatives.
Dec23, her test result returned positive..." #B117
(Also took a connecting flight)
Oh, that #B117 infected flight passenger in #Chile...
she got tested at Santiago airport, when arriving from Europe.
And departed on another flight before her (positive) test result arrived.
#Rotterdam Health Authority:
(Elementary school & #B117)

"It´s remarkable that so many young children at this school have been infected"

"Until now, we thought children would not take part in spreading #COVID19.
But this might have us change our view..."
nos.nl/artikel/236246… Image
"I was surprised at how quickly everyone became infected. Really everyone who had been around my child tested positive,' says one parent."
(Elementary #School, #B117, #Netherlands)

meanwhile, one teacher passed away.
"It's spreading rapidly from the places where it's started, in the east of London and in Kent.
And, alas, it's starting to seed across the country."

#B117 #UK
#Singapore has no luck with people bringing #B117 from #UK and slipping it into the country,
despite sophisticated test & quarantine...
how are our one-time rapid antigen tested,
quarantine-free truck drivers from #UK doing, today?

Ah! "Just" 0,33% have been found to be acutely infectious, so far.
That´s 96 exported outbreaks stopped.
The #UK / #France border management has been compared to "developping nations´ standards".

That was certainly unjustified...
▫️Cleaning and
▫️New drivers
at the border!
seems to be very strict,
to prevent #COVID19 from spreading.
“Rwanda has introduced tough and unrealistic measures to the Industry which will disrupt the entire supply chain and undermine the efficiency, seamlessness and cost-effectiveness of cargo transportation in the Region”
So they settled for... testing.
"Elementary #School students are spreading infections with this #UK variant (#B117).
That´s not normal. It is something to be worried about..."
Says #Netherlands´ Health Minister.
(More test results from a recent school #Cluster came in, today)

Whithin a week
🔸test positivity went from 5% to 18%
🔸 nearly no delay between surge in cases and hospital admissions (doubled)
🔸R =1.6~1.8

"~This is different from the waves before!~"


"Spreading at a rate faster than even the most pessimistic modelling"

Also in China´s archived first "new disease" statement

"The disease is preventable and controllable.

▫️Keep indoor settings ventilated,
▫️Avoid closed public places and crowded places with poor air circulation,
▫️Wear masks when going out"
#China one year later:
The patient tested "negative" on Dec12
2 days before flying UK->China

"She described running in a park without mask and taking off her mask to eat and drink while waiting to board the plane, which may be when she was infected"
chinadaily.com.cn/a/202012/30/WS… Image
In #Japan,
it would be that time of year, when most companies close.
To let everyone have one of the rare periods to spend with their elderly family in the countryside...

Not this year.
(None of the usual traffic jams and crowded trains.
It´s "Stay Home")
The 🇯🇵 #NHK article has info like:
"The infected are in age groups of 10 to 100+ years."
"If this continues, it would lead to an ´infection explosion´..."

But this 🇬🇧version has the voice of the narrator that suggests:
Something is clearly wrong, here.
Explaining #Ireland´s surging #COVID19 cases (beyond #B117):

"The average number of contacts per case has risen from 2.5 in November to an average in recent days of 6.3"

"The number of cases are so high that we are experiencing delays in reporting them".
#COVID19 #Uncontained
"Testing and tracing is an exercise in containment.
We are no longer in a containment phase."

All close contacts no longer being tested, in #Ireland.
(But restricted movement applies)
"Royal London Hospital says they´re operating in disaster medicine mode. They can no longer provide high-standard critical care"

There were rumours the EXCEL nightingale had been scrapped and there´d be no staff to operate it - so, don´t expext too much.
"The new #Strain and failure of tiers have lead to an unexpected increase in numbers. We are going to have to open more beds"

1 nurse: 3 patients. The ratio has been changed.

"While this is far from ideal, it´s the way things are"
"Every #hospital in North East #London is struggling, some with insufficient oxygen supplies, all with insufficient nursing numbers.

"#Kent is in a similar, if not worse, position."

A resident of #France came back from South Africa.
It was only a few days after his return,
(when he felt #COVID19 symptoms)
that he decided to get a PCR test in #Switzerland (?)
And then isolated at home (in France).

Some jolly border crossings🙄
solidarites-sante.gouv.fr/IMG/pdf/cp_-_3… Image
#France "discovered" their first #COVID19 case with the "South Africa" (#501V2) variant yesterday.
Although #Switzerland´s authorities already reported it 4 days ago...

🤷🇨🇭: People happen to vanish there... and then pop up in other places.
The #COVID19 situation in #Ireland, this morning:

"The pace of the third wave of the virus has taken everyone by surprise".

"It may be necessary to go even beyond the current Level 5 restrictions."
#Ireland´s NPHET had already warned 2 days ago:
The current case curve is resembling the blue / red lines in the graph below📈.
As there is severe underrepporting, the actual situation might be even more serious...
assets.gov.ie/117748/e3b13a2… Image
#France Ille-et-Vilaine prefecture activated its Crisis Operation Center, because of...
a rave party that´s been going on since yesterday.
It went a bit out of hands.

This morning, they counted 2.500 participants, from all across France (and Poland)🔊🕺
The organizers of #France´s large illegal rave don´t understand the fuss.
They complain that no-one takes note of their effort to provide a stand with free masks and hand-sanitizer...
😕 Image
Really no-one takes note of the provided free masks...
Not even the ravers.

Latest update:
the rave is still ongoing.
Presumably "until monday".

Meanwhile, the world is watching #France...
Even The New York Times has reported on #France's #raveparty issue.

But that's just headlines.
The real problems would start, if the region's neighbors got the impression that France is losing control...
(remember France demanded tests for lorry drivers?)
But maybe, one problem is still totally "unreal" for most of the ravers (and most of us):
"There are 20-30 year olds coming in, with no other underlying conditions. Many don't even realize how sick they are"...

(oxygen deficiency tricks the brain).
Maybe we'd better take the risks of #B117 seriously.

Until now, the saying was "for the future of our #children, #schools need to stay open".

But there's a shift, now:
The future will need healthy children...
The rave party in #France is over.
(And that´s not a #COVID test station, they´re heading to...)
In August ´20, there had been an open-air rave of 10.000 folks in #France.

During evacuation, "2 #COVID19 test centres" were deployed (for voluntary testing)
No results reported. They would have gone under in France´s 2nd wave 2-3 weeks later, anyway...
Today, Regional Health Authorities say they provided ~500 rapid (antigen) tests to the site of #France´s rave party.
They also urge everyone who has been there to isolate 7 days at home and get tested after that.
(Remarkable) Details on #Germany´s 1st discovered case of #B117:
That young lady on the last flight from London,
she had already been transferred to a Quarantine Hotel (👍didn´t know we had this)

...and then her father insisted to take her home.
Meanwhile, in #France:

"A #COVID19 rapid antigen testing center is set up in front of the gymnasium of Lieuron. The participants of the #Raveparty are ´strongly encouraged´ to go there..."
#B117 in #Switzerland:
A schoolboy (9 years) from London.
His school in #UK had been closed, due to #COVID19 cases.
He & his mother had spent 10 day 🇬🇧quarantine, then took a flight to CH (Dec20), 7 day 🇨🇭quarantine.
In CH, mother & son tested "positive".
Suddenly, UK comes up with quite reasonable solutions.

-🚛#COVID19 testing centres along the motorways
-free support for transport companies to establish their own testing centres (🤔what would they do with a "positive" result?)

Interesting to see...!
#UK government is excercising pressure on some counties to reopen #Schools on monday.
No one understands why this must happen, while #COVID19 cases are still surging.

And it seems it is brewing up a fierce storm...
kentonline.co.uk/thanet/news/co… Image
While parents suggest they´d rather not send their kids to #School,
#UK National Education Union advised their members that "it is unsafe to return to work on monday".
The National Association of Headteachers is taking the extraordinary step to take legal action against #UK´s Department of Education...
in order to stop schools from opening on monday.
The first local authority is now bypassing #UK government.

“The Government has left us to make this decision that it is not brave enough to face..."

Primary #Schools close / go remote
#NewZealand has detected 6 cases of the #B117 virus variant, so far.

No worries - all of them were discovered while they were in "Managed Isolation"...

Interestingly, 5 of them came from #UK.
And one came from... South Africa (!)
health.govt.nz/news-media/med… Image
In #UK, more councils would prefer to keep #schools closed.
This is from #Cumbria, going the official way,
sending good arguments to the government...
#Essex doesn´t wait any longer.
They just declared schools would remain closed.

"This is to allow ECC to clarify the Government position on primary schools..."😯

#Tier4 is in force since Dec19. It´s 2 weeks now.
Usually, it takes ~3 weeks until results show how well measures work.⌛️
So, "in a week or so" might be a good time to see
if Tier 4 would be appropriate for other #UK regions...
(if you´d have that time)
Those Brits from #Verbier, who "disappeared over night" -

That wasn´t a clandestine escape from #Switzerland´s authorities.

It was🇨🇭Switzerland´s plan!

(which somehow wasn´t clear. Maybe it got entangled in typical federal-cantonal dissonance)
bazl.admin.ch/bazl/en/home/m… Image
#UK Health & Safety regulations give workers the right to ~refrain from unsafe work.
Many teachers are now declaring they won´t come to #School, tomorrow.

(Unions had already stated conditions in schools were "not safe")
"The four English patients are family members -- parents and two children -- from Kent."

#B117 #Thailand
Being relaxed😎

"Thailand's Disease Centre urged the public not to panic as #Thailand is familiar with the fast-spreading Covid-19 strain -- known as G-strain -- found in Myanmar migrant workers.

#B117 is similar to the G-strain from Myanmar in terms of it being fast-spreading"
Oh. That´s not the "#COVID19-under-control" #Thailand we had known for so long...

(Current updates say, today´s number could be ~850)
ourworldindata.org/coronavirus/co… Image
Well, more ´official´ numbers say, #Thailand has just registered a new record of 745 #COVID19 cases.
bangkokpost.com/thailand/gener… Image
#Thailand´s new #COVID19 outbreak started at...
a seafood market.

Despite drastic measures (including barbed wire around some housings) the outbreak has now spread to more than 51 provinces.
This is how it started, ~2 weeks ago:
#Cyprus found that 12 out of 19 recently imported cases from UK carried #B117
"Of 19 positive tests for #COVID19 recorded on individuals who arrived in Cyprus from Britain between Dec. 6-20, Cypriot authorities found that 12 were for the new variant."
#Austria does very sporadic sequencing.
But even there, #SARSCoV2 variants have now been detected:
1x "South Africa" #501V2
4x "UK" #B117... interestingly/confusingly only 2 with the "UK" variant had been to UK (?????)🤨
sarscov2-austria.org Image
3 of #Austria´s 4 "UK" #B117 variant cases were children (12 / 10 / 9 years old). One came from #UK. The other 2 are from Slovakia (???)

"Even though they quarantined with (uninfected) family members, there is NO TRANSMISSION known"😯
😯#Austria found their 5 virus variant cases while sequencing samples of only 388 cases.

(targeted samples, like passengers from UK, but... that´s still ~1% of samples were already virus variants !!)
"The both Kids who were infected with the ´UK´ variant #B117 returned immediately to Slovakia..."
(Video at 31´35")

🤨(they brought their infection with #B117 from #Slovakia????)
tvthek.orf.at/topic/News/138… Image
The "UK" variant #B117 has just been confirmed in #Slovakia. It has been identified "in the first samples" examined from Michalovce district.😕

Michalovce is a small town at the far eastern end of Slovakia, close to the border to Ukraine...
#Denmark does a lot of sequencing.
They were sequencing constantly ~10% of all #COVID19 cases in December.

They found: #B117 is on the rise,

49: 0.2% were #B117 (´UK´ variant)
50: 0.5%
51: 0.9%
52: 2.3%

(we´re 2 weeks later, now)
ssi.dk/-/media/cdn/fi… Image
#AUS 🇦🇺Victoria

needs to stay
determined &

in 2021 as well...
New #COVID19 outbreak.
(it came from #NSW. #VIC borders closed, but not a lockdown, yet)
Meanwhile, in #NSW,
a potentially "explosive" infection source was discovered.

And it was seeded by *very short* contacts.
overseas travellers⤵️
↪️quarantine transfer staff
↪️Beer, Wine, Spirits Shop employees
Thousands of customers...
#NSW just found out:
A young man got infected while briefly visiting the "explosively infectious" Beer/Wine/Spirits shop in Sydney.

And then went on a road trip,
for "thousands of kilometres", across the state...
~A week ago #Switzerland had found one swiss carrier of #501V2 ('South Africa' variant).

Until today, it is unexplicable where he got it from.
He, his contacts and his contacts' contacts had no connection to South Africa.

➡"It must be in the community"
Switzerland's #501V2 case was discovered by random sequencing.

#Denmark is sequencing ~10% of all their #COVID19 cases.
They say they'd found no carrier of this 'South Africa' variant in DK, so far.

(they soon want to be sequencing 25% of cases)
Based on #Denmark's sequencing results, DK's Health Minister confirmed:
the 'UK' variant #B117 is there and it's presence is growing exponentially.

"By February, #B117 will be dominating in Denmark".

(ℹWas 2.3% two weeks ago.
Would be ~10% this week...)
In #Ireland, just a few days ago:
"With <10% of all cases, #B117 is not the cause for current surge"
(based on samples from December 23 to 29).
In #Ireland, not even a week later.
"25% of #COVID19 cases are now the #B117 variant"

😕(data base is unclear, article confusing - but there'll surely be an official report, soon)
The last time, I've been staring at breaking news from #Japan like this was ~10 years ago.

There were also numbers on the screen, the narrator was talking fast.

Back then, the city's panorama was shaking.
This time, the wave is invisible.

#Tokyo: 1.500
After "carefully looking into the situation" for a month, the opinion seeking process with specialists will soon be completed...
#Tokyo's emergency plan might be announced tomorrow.

(Legally, it will be limited to ~asking everyone to behave cautiously)
Everyone in #Tokyo is insecure, if going to the movies will still be "acceptable behaviour" by tomorrow.

Today it still is.
So cinemas are crowded.

(sorry, those last 11 places are certainly sold by now - #えんとつ町のプペル is a popular anime)
A projection of Tokyo´s #COVID19 future:
🟥current path (R=1.1)
🟨Restaurants close earlier, only
🟦Everyone is doing their best to stop the spread

(The best case will take ~2 months to bring numbers down.)
No, there´s no foreign #Variant in this plan.
This is not a simple "record number".
It is 55% higher than the same weekday, a week ago.
(Which was also a record).

Better news: although #Japan has had "only" 25 cases with #variants, they managed to isolate #B117 and are happy to share their knowledge!
(admittably, #India had already claimed 3 days earlier, they had also isolated the #B117 variant of #SARSCoV2...)
In a statement, #Slovakia´s Health Minister suspects
the #B117 variant might already be present in parts of the country.

("As the curve looks similar to that in England")

They´ll start a search with specific "S-gene primer" tests, soon.
health.gov.sk/Clanok?Stanovi… Image
Turns out the man in #Germany who was infected with #B117 by a Czech colleague sometime Nov/Dec...

he infected his entire family.
But he was the only one whose samples were sequenced.

"As they had no outside contact, we suppose it was contained".
welt.de/regionales/nrw… Image
Turns out #Germany has no clue how far #B117 etc variants are spread.
There´s no strategy for systematic sequencing of samples from #COVID19 cases.

They will come up with a plan "in the weeks to come"

"Priority: stop variant-import at the border"
aerzteblatt.de/nachrichten/11… Image
While #Germany´s only defence against #B117 was said to be "border controls",
North Rhine-Westphalia just blew it up:

You can chose
a) a 10 day #Quarantine
b) a ONE-TIME rapid antigen-test (can be done up to 24 hours AFTER entry for non-🇬🇧🇿🇦)
mags.nrw/pressemitteilu… Image
There was this #School in the #Netherlands, where children were believed to spread #COVID19 infections.

Authorities invited for a mass testing.
750 people (all somehow connected to the school) took part.

First results say: 10% are positive.
#B117, too.
lansingerland.nl/actueel/update… Image
#Netherlands´ health authorities say "this is an update, not end-results":
750 tested
~75 (10%) "positive"
at least 30 of them carry #B117 (´UK´ variant)

And: it has spread to another #School.

Testing will now be massively expanded in that town.
Quarantine Hotels are there to prevent entry of #COVID19 , but they aren´t perfect.

A cleaner, working in such a facility in Brisbane (QLD, #AUS) got infected there, with #B117.

She unknowingly went on with her normal life for 5 days, went to town, etc.
B117 got out of quarantine.

"This person did everything right".
With #B117, doing everything right
might be not enough.

Yesterday, #Japan had
6.001 cases.
7.490 today.

That´s +25%
in one day.
In #Tokyo, there were
1.591 cases yesterday,
2.447 today.

That´s +50%
in one day.

"A senior official said that the speed of the increase is surprising."
"#Japan´s Prime Minister had hoped cases would subside at the end of last year.
He affirmed in a news conference on December 25 that a #StateOfEmergency was not required."

"But #COVID19 cases stubbornly refused to go down..."
Now we have a picture of how the #B117 variant is taking hold in #Ireland.

First time registered with
⏺️8.6% (6 cases in 70 samples)
a week later
(the last number is already ~half a week old, so would be higher, today)

(CMO letter):
gov.ie/en/collection/… Image
#Schools & #COVID19
a very ambiguous matter....

#Ireland´s CMO wrote pragmatically
~"We still believe, kids are quite safe in schools.
But somehow closing schools does lower overall case numbers in society. Why this happens? No-one knows for sure... 🤷‍♂️"
assets.gov.ie/118212/b00522b… Image
This is, how #Ireland´s Health Minister (to whome the CMO letters are sent) interprets the advice on #Schools...
Seems #Ireland has decided to open *some* #Schools after the weekend. And somehow, this decision (and the decision process) is not well understood by ... well, a lot of people.
At the same time in #Ireland:
R >2
Variants already play a roll
"extraordinary high" #COVID19 positivity rates are being seen, as high as 40-50% in community testing.

"The message now is that if you think you have Covid-19, you probably do."
The ´UK´ variant #B117 also seems to play a bigger roll in the #Netherlands than expected.

"It seems that already 1-5% of new #COVID19 cases in #NL are the new variant" (in Amsterdam& Rotterdam)

(NL virologist, busy with screening cases for new variants)
#Ireland´s idea to reopen (at least some) #Schools looks questionable.

A large Teachers´ Union just announced they had not seen convincing data that schools would be ´sufficiently safe´ in the context of #B117 variant and high #COVID19 numbers.
asti.ie/news-campaigns… Image
another media realease from #Ireland´s teachers´ union:

Due to "significant health & safety concerns" they direct their members "not to co-operate", but to "engage in remote learning" instead.

#Schools & #COVID19 / #B117
asti.ie/news-campaigns… Image
R 2.4~3
(as a result of infections that happened ~2 weeks ago)
For those thinking
"Oh, #Incidence 50, that´ll be the goal - we´ll be safe, then..."

That´s where #Ireland was ~2 weeks ago.🔎

(note: that graph is 3 days old. Current case number is ~60% higher than then)
hpsc.ie/a-z/respirator… Image
"Number of contacts"
that´s an awesome indicator!

(if you still have an operating contact tracing system)

#Ireland calculated: contacts per case have been reduced from 4.8 (X-mas time🙄) to ~3 now.
So they suggest infection numbers might plateau, soon.

One "person working in education" has somehow been infected with #B117 in #France.
No contact to UK.

But many contacts in the 2 schools near Paris, where the person was working...
Another B117 cluster in #France.
It´s a geriatric nursing home.
A nurse carried the ´UK´ variant.

It has already spread to a second ward.
2 staff members, 7 residents are positive with #B117 so far. But there are more infections, waiting to be analyzed
solidarites-sante.gouv.fr/IMG/pdf/cp_mss… Image
To get a picture how far #B117 has already spread (through its appearance in an education worker),
the city of #Bagneux (near Paris, #France) will offer tests for the entire community.

(Note: Tests not available on sunday. It's the weekend, after all!)😕
Meanwhile, #Australia:

"Greater #Brisbane will go into lockdown for three days, while contact tracers work to ensure #B117 is not circulating in the community."

3 days to sort it out.

(after a quarantine hotel's cleaner unknowingly brought it into town)
2 months ago, #Fance´s utility #RTE had warned

"Due to the #pandemic, a lot of nuclear #power plants could not be maintained as usual and will be out of service in early 2021.
In case of cold temperatures, there might be energy scarcity."

It´s happening:
"🔴#France´s current energy consumption is too high!
To avoid imminent blackouts⚡️, save #energy !

- Switch off lights
- turn (electric) heaters to low, when absent
- don´t charge your phone
- delay use of washing machines"

Do check the website:
monecowatt.fr/?refresh=16100… Image
#France´s utility #RTE is reassuring:

"There are no blackouts planned.
In case they would happen,
hospitals do have emergency backup generators"


An update from the geriatric nursing home in #France:
they are infected, but sequencing of the first sample showed it´s not #B117.

It´s still a #COVID19 cluster...
bretagne.ars.sante.fr/covid-19-point… Image
People don´t realise how incredibly bad ventilated a car cabin is. Aerosols accumulate in short time.
So, if you open the window, an (invisible, but concentrated) whiff will make its way out...
#B117 arrived in #Berlin,
a lo😴😐🙄ng time ago.

One case was found via retrospective sequencing, now.
Several contacts had been infected as well.
They all have recovered since then.

Ah, maybe there were 2 more contacts, before the case was isolated...
berlin.de/sen/gpg/servic… Image
#B117 is too fast

"The entire family got infected within a day"

A family member (student in #UK) who had returned for a Christmas visit brought the virus to #Berlin...

(they were tested on December 23,
the first sequencing result came in today)🐌⌛️
tagesspiegel.de/berlin/nach-ei… Image
"System Operators ensured that the system stability was not affected in most European countries."

🙄 Hey.
What´s this.
Sounds good.
It´s got nothing to do with #COVID19, does it?
non, non, non !
"In no way has the near blackout of the European #Energy grid anything to do with our warning today."

(Actually, they saved the grid by cutting supply to 16 industrial sites in France).
🤨But, has that near blackout anything to do with #COVID19?

As France couldn´t maintain their nuclear power plants last year (due to #COVID19),
too many plants are offline now.
There´s no reserve capacity, if things go slightly wrong...
#Romania experienced a widespread blackout, today.
They say "there was a problem with the european network".

And they found a first case of #B117 as well.
The young lady hadn´t been out of Romania.

Not a good day.😫
New #COVID19 data from #Denmark´s SSI:

#B117 is continuing its exponential rise📈

Week 49: 0.2%
50: 0.5%
51: 0.9%
52: 1.9%
53: (2.9%, results are not all ready, yet)

("only a few of the cases had some contact link to the #UK"😦)
ssi.dk/-/media/cdn/fi… Image
#Denmark´s SSI says,
screening for #B117 variant with traditional sequencing (2 week procedure) would simply take too long.

Therefore they want to roll out a new "Delta PCR" test,
enabling them to screen *ALL* positive #COVID19 cases.
Start: ~next week
ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede… Image
Another case of #B117 in Brisbane!
(by test result)
Or maybe not... anymore...
(by law)
it´s complicated
One lady flew from UK to Melbourne.
Quarantined there. Tested #COVID19 "positive".
Completed her 10 day quarantine and was released, as rules are.
Flew to Brisbane then.

THEN 🐌sequencing results came: she had (had) #B117.
(Another test: still "positive")
Maybe, a faster #B117 screening would have prevented the new Brisbane scare.

Or an appropriate quarantine period, allowing to wait for the slower sequencing results (which is what seems to be done, now)...
The fire department🚒of Marseille (#France) has a very special duty:
They take wastewater samples to analyse them for #COVID19 markers.🪣🦠🔬

2 days ago, they noted that the markers had suddenly started to go up.📈

They worried,
and they were right...
Regional Health Authority:

"A returnee from #UK tested #COVID19 ´positive´ on Dec31, in Marseille (#France).
He had 45 close contacts, 23 of them tested ´positive´, so far.

Latest news:
the index case is carrier of the #B117 variant..."

#Marseille fire department´s wastewater surveillance is a dedicated #COVID19 detection force.
They take samples of ~100 nursing homes, every week.
They also take sewer samples.
"Sometimes we can prevent clusters before the first person even shows symptoms"
#Berlin - are you alright there?

You guys at the statistics department all enjoyed your lazy holidays and now you´re back at work... that must be it.
Or should we be worried ?

+50% #COVID19 incidence
in ~3 days
berlin.de/corona/lageber… Image
Update on the spread of #B117 in the #Netherlands:
🟡ALL Willibrord-#School cases are infected with the ´UK´ variant.
⚠️Infections have already spread outside of school setting (contacts of families)

(Actually 3 days old, but it was very hard to find...)
nltimes.nl/2021/01/08/bri… Image
Due to an alarming surge in #COVID19 cases,
#Tokyo is under "State of Emergency".

The traditional Sumo tournament still goes on.
65 wrestlers will be missing, because they´re infected or close contacts.

But there´s also one more who will not take part...
Due to concerns about #COVID19 infections at #Tokyo´s Sumo tournament, one wrestler asked for allowance to stay away.

Japan´s Sumo association denied his wish as being "unreasonable"

So he ended his career💪
In Marseille (#France), 23 of 45 known contacts of a #B117 carrier from #UK tested #COVID19 "positive".
Already 7 of them have now been confirmed to carry the ´UK´ variant.

The fire department is deployed with special test teams to confine the outbreak.
The fire department´s COMETE
(COvid #Marseille Environment Testing & Expertise)
unit uses 2 mobile labs and 10 rapid-testing teams.

Through wastewater samples they encircled one specific house today.
30 inhabitants were tested:
2 more #COVID19 cases found
A video of Marseille´s COMETE #COVID19 detection unit in action. (Using LAMP assay for SARS-CoV-2 detection, it seems).

(It´s dated April 2020. They were pretty swiftly adopting to the new challenge, there...)
Another day, another #B117 case in #France:
This time in popular ski region Hautes-Alpes.

The story is the same as in Marseille:
"A french family, residing in #UK came to France to spend their holidays..."

(Case and contacts isolated, now)
Slovakia´s Health Minister, after finding ´UK´ virus cases in yet another city (Bratislava):

"Seems the new variant (#B117) has already been distributed to every region of #Slovakia and thus isolating individual regions at this stage would be pointless."
🌎From #Brazil to #Japan🧬
Another new #SARSCoV2 variant was detected in 4 passengers from the Amazonas region, who arrived at Haneda airport on January 2.

(Yes, there are many variants, but this is maybe another one to watch out for...)
It´s not yet clear, what the new variant from #Brazil is capable of, but it also has the "increased infectiousness" mutation.

(Here´s info from #Japan, where the new variant was discovered):
Checking wastewater for #COVID19 indicators:

"The #B117 strain could be detected by mid December,
2 weeks before its first verification in a patient sample from #Switzerland..."
The #Brisbane 3-day radical #Lockdown ends.

They think they got #B117 under control.
It was just one Index case...
and they guess they found all 370 close contacts.

They are all quarantined and tested.

0 new cases in the community, so far.
Would #Brisbane consider another #Lockdown again?

"It depends if it's from this UK variant, this is a whole new ball game - it's something we've never seen before…"

(Half of 370 contacts have so far returned ´negative´ test results, so there´s hope)
In #France, things are still a long way from "under control"...

The case of #B117 in the Hautes-Alpes ski area turns out to be a family member of the index case who caused infections in Marseille.
francetvinfo.fr/sante/maladie/… Image
It's not over, in #Brisbane.
But it's reassuring to know that all contacts of the index case are believed to be in quarantine already...

(+In case one went unnoticed: masks remain mandatory and several other measures will stay in place for 10 more days.)
A while ago, "some people" went skiing in the beautiful mountain village of Wengen (#Switzerland).
Before they returned home, they left something behind.

#B117 outbreak now.
Everyone is urged to stay indoors.
(✳Yes, including tourists✳)

#Switzerland´s authorities are "worried about the aggressive spread of infections" in Wengen.
They assume "this effect is caused by the ´UK´ mutation" #B117

They are so worried that
they just cancelled

Lauberhorn Worldcup

worth ~9 million CHF
Just a few hours before regional authorities withdrew their approval,
#Lauberhorn worldcup organizers
were appeasing:

"The races are not cancelled, yet.
We still look into the situation..."

(#B117 outbreak Wengen, #Switzerland)
#Lauberhorn worldcup organizers are in shock.

And the wording ~"cantonal authorities decided..." + "we support their decision"
is usually a strong indicator that authorities didn´t negotiate much, but ordered the whole thing to close immediately
An update on the teacher who carried #B117 while working at 2 schools, near #Paris:

First results for her 172 colleagues are in:
2 are #COVID19 "positive".
They are also teachers.

(interestingly, no other carrier of the ´UK´ variant was found, so far...)
The history of the #B117 outbreak in Marseille goes (so far):

French family from #UK comes to enjoy X-mas with ~15 friends in #Marseille.🥂☣️🎄
One of the infected then goes off to celebrate New Year´s Eve with ~12 friends...🥂☣️🎇

and so on.
Here we get a look behind the scenes of #Marseille´s #COVID19 hunting fire brigade unit ´COMETE´.
(like adventurous innovators always do, they installed their lab in a garage...)
lci.fr/societe/video-… Image
#Marseille´s #B117 outbreak:

The family from #UK got tested, before they left for #France: negative.
They self-isolated 4 days in France, then got tested again negative.
At their party in Marseille, everyone did a rapid (antigen) test: negative
Another X-mas visit from #UK, in #France.
"Upon the very first symptoms, the family self-isolated at the grandparents´ house and got tested."

Nevertheless both grandparents got infected.
Grandpa needed to go to hospital (Dec 29).

Tests at hospital, now.
That map (beginning of the clip) is supposed to show all regions of #France where #B117 cases have been detected, so far.

Some of them happened early as mid-December.
Some of them had no #UK contacts.

(what happened in Aquitaine? Haven´t found a report.)
#Austria found some "suspicious anomaly" in 17 PCR Tests from #Tyrol
(~pointing to #B117).

Then they found out: most tests came from #UK citizens.
They all arrived before Dec18 - First symptoms on Jan3. (⚠)

(They came for skiing instructors' training)🎿
The situation in Wengen (#Switzerland) sounds drastic.

One #UK guest initiated a chain of #B117 infections ~Dec27 (or before).
First, it hit the hotel staff.
Then it spread into the village.
Now, new infections come in continuosly.

~"We couldn´t stop it"
be.ch/portal/de/inde… Image
Authorities think #B117 infections may also have affected 80 kids, who spent their holidays skiing in Wengen
(Some already tested #COVID19 "positive").

Holidays are over.

They all have returned back to home
(somewhere else in #Switzerland)...
srf.ch/news/schweiz/v… Image
Due to the rapid rise of #B117 infections, #Lauberhorn ski worldcup was cancelled. Installations in Wengen stand abandoned.

They will now be used for voluntary mass testing of everyone in the village
(👉Yes, this includes tourists👈)
Press conference in #Switzerland🇨🇭today (on #B117):

"Where the new virus variants arrive, the situation becomes alarming very quickly.

Even in situations where we´d thought we had done everything to prevent a spread"
The #501V2 variant has spread in #Germany.
On Dec13, a family returned from South Africa.

They followed the rules: self isolate, then a test after 5 days.
Their tests came back "negative", so they were "cleared" to go.

Symptoms started a week later...
A sequencing of the first ´supicious´ case already showed:
#501V2 has arrived to #Germany.

In the time to this discovery, already 3 other households (6 persons) had been infected...

More contacts are about to be sequenced.
zollernalbkreis.de/aktuelles/nach… Image
In the wake of being surrounded by states with outbreaks of new virus variants, #Bavaria just made #FFP2 masks mandatory on public transport and while shopping.

"We need full protection, now.
And they are available in sufficient volumes."
Reactions to #FFP2 mask mandate in #Bavaria:

😩They are expensive!
😫And you should not wear them for prolongued time!

According to the Mayor,
health authorities have just declared the outbreak of "the mutant virus" #B117 in #Marseille as being under control.
France´s Health Minister just announced that a study on thousands of PCR tests (from Thursday/Friday last week) showed that

"1% of all cases in #France are now the ´UK´ variant #B117"

There´s no concentration in one region. They´re scattered everywhere."
The reference tweet for the "1% of cases in France are now #B117" statement has been moved to another link by BFMTV.

But (even better) here´s the article.
(Adding that the survey will now be repeated regularly)
HERE´s what happened in France´s Aquitaine region

Back on December 19,
Europeleague rugby club #Bayonne welcomed the team of Leicester #UK for one match in France...

7 days later, 7 players tested #COVID19 "positive",
another 5 days later, 2 more:👨‍🔬#B117
Due to a very worrying rise in case numbers, #Japan has declared a State of Emergency for multiple cities (including #Tokyo).

This is supposed to show a recent picture of Tokyo´s hospital coordination centre.
#テレワークできない 🙄
www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/ne… Image
Interesting to see, how #B117 overcomes barriers that were so far deemed to be "safe":

inside the quarantine hotel, where #Brisbane´s index case is isolated, cases of the ´UK´ variant now are spreading to other quarantinees.

No one knows why...
Now #Brisbane's Quarantine hotel is deemed so unsafe, that those who had been quarantined there before are now urged to...
immediately quarantine again!

They could be infected with #B117

at least that's the view of another state (#Victoria).
~3 weeks after "Tier 4" measures came into force,
England´s case numbers look as if they´d slow down.
Somehow #Switzerland seems to anticipate #COVID19 cases might soon cause workplaces to be hotspots.

New rules issued today, including:
-masks are mandatory at indoor workplaces (regardless of distance !)
-work from home is mandatory (*when ever feasible)
this is #Brisbane´s quarantine hotel,
where #B117 infections were spreading across the 7th floor?
Only on that floor - not above or below?

🤔How could this have happened ??????


So we already "have evidence" that the ´South Africa´ variant #501V2 is not fought off by antibodies from earlier "ordinary" #COVID19 infections?

And this is just the explanation why...:

So the ´Amazonas´ variant from Brazil,
(I think it is named #501V3, now)
is also reinfecting those who had an "ordinary" #COVID19 infection earlier?
(via @kenmomd) Image
It's hidden in a presentation on financial aid...

But on page 32,
Switzerland's canton #Vaud calculates:
🔹5-8% of cases are now 'UK' / 'South Africa' variants.
🔹"Possible outbreak of third Wave in 2-3 weeks"
via @slwirth
#B117 #501V2 #COVID19
vd.ch/fileadmin/user… Image
And there's a large #B117 cluster at the LHC...

(nope - not the "Large Hadron Collider"💫)
It's the "Lausanne Hockey Club"!⚾
And they're believed to already have spread infections to other teams (as early as January 2) during hockey matches.
#UK requires
No quarantine
No testing

No Entry⛔️🤚
due to the ´Brazil´ variant (#B11248)
As a European country with actual borders with #Brazil, #France is ramping up its border protection of their overseas departement French #Guiana.

(It´s much closer to the origin of variant #B11248 in the Amazon than Portugal🌎)
So this is what it looks like, when the ´Brazil/Amazon´ variant with its "#E484K mutation" comes and infects everyone again

(especially those, who might have thought they were immune, as they´d had #COVID19 in the earlier days...)
🤔What gives better protection than wearing #FFP2 masks on public transport?

😉No public transport!

It´s suggested #Germany is contemplating this step.

(It will need more thorough thinking for sure...
Maybe ´for essential use only´?🤨
It is thought 17 of the infected "ski instructors" in Tyrol do carry #B117.
A close contact was also tested "positive" today.
His PCR test shows "anomalies", as well.

On the contrary:
~1.000 villagers have been tested so far.
3 "positive", no #B117.
tirol.gv.at/presse/meldung… Image

"There's an ongoing concern amongst a lot of health professionals that the Government isn't acting on the possibility of aerosol transmission of COVID-19"

#Queensland doesn't know aerosol transmission of #SARSCoV2 / #COVID19????

March 2020

"Studies show people are catching COVID19 through larger respiratory droplets when they're close to an infected person.

If with further study we find out this information has changed, we’ll let you know."

Many cities in France have their wastewater analyzed for #COVID19 markers in a central lab called #OBÉPINE.

In their experience, #COVID cases follow wastewater markers after ~3 weeks.

The lab now warned:
the indicators for #Paris have gone up 50%.
National Health Directorate of #France:

"We have detected one case carrying the ´South Africa´ variant #501V2 in Val-de-Marne" (near Paris).

"It seems his contacts are spread over the #Paris region, as well as other regions"...
solidarites-sante.gouv.fr/actualites/pre… Image
I read
year´s end was meant to bring families together.
To bring those who live abroad back to #Lebanon, so they could spend some money in cafés, shops, event locations - they opened just for that period.

It brought some money.
But what did it take away
Trying to hold back the outbreaks,
Lebanon is in #Lockdown, now.
A real lockdown.
24 hour curfew, for 11 days.
Supermarkets are closed.

But there´s delivery service,
if you have the money.

So, only for a few.
Meanwhile, in #Switzerland:
"the death rate is the price we pay to keep our economy running"

Even there, the price is seen as too high, now.
Switzerland's #COVID19 Science Task Force:

(campaigning for massive measures' roll-out, using swiss-style arguments:)

"With vaccination in sight, preventing infections will bevome more cost-effective.
Such measures could be seen as an investment..."💰

"A 29-year-old woman contracted Covid-19 for the first time in March 2020 and was infected again in December, nine months later."

It has now been confirmed, the #reinfection was caused by the new '#Brazil/Amazon' variant (#P1).
A week earlier,
authorities in Bahia (#Brazil) had already confirmed another case of #reinfection - but with the 'South Africa' variant...
The ´UK´ Variant #B117 (which ´only´ infects people more easily) is starting to be traced in multiple countries.
Here´s the data #Switzerland has found:

CH🇨🇭 seems to follow the path of UK,
📈with ~9 weeks delay.

(Denmark keeps the rise slower)
sciencetaskforce.ch/wp-content/upl… Image
Someone had the idea to install an air sampler in a car that was driven by a "mildly symptomatic" (#COVID19) person.

The drive took 15 minutes.
The sampler detected "viable virus" in airborne particles on the passenger´s side.

(enough to infect someone?)
medrxiv.org/content/10.110… Image
One expert panel in #Germany is now commissioned to analyze the effects of potentially infectious aerosols
-in public transport
-in crew vehicles (police patrol, etc.)

(Halting public transport is still discussed
Bavaria will make FFP2 masks mandatory.)
landtag-bw.de/home/aktuelles… Image
Oh look!
Even the ´UK´ variant #B117 can be mastered!

(with everbody staying home during X-Mas holidays, schools closed and #Tier4 restrictions...)📉

🔎"we need to keep an eye on the uptick during the last couple of days" - that´s when work had resumed📈
that ´workplace as an infection source´ idea might be actually a thing...

UK: #SARSCoV2 infections at workplaces increasing,
after holidays are over and work has started.

(....🤨wait... that´s a no-brainer, isn´t it?)
One workplace that´s particularly high on my personal
"I´m happy to do something else"
2020: collapsing players due to bushfire smoke
2021: #COVID19
#AustralianOpen #Melbourne #VIC
That´s another plane.
On the way to the #AustralianOpen.

One passenger, one crew member tested #COVID19
"negative" before departure

"positive" upon arrival.
Those flights to Melbourne.
They were special charter flights for #AustralianOpen players & entourage?

I´d have thought they´d have an especially strict #COVID19 protection concept, considering the vast amount of money depending on these matches...🤷
There´s one special protection measure for the #AustralianOpen tournament:
the players arrive 3 weeks before the event starts.

That´s (theoretically) enough time to spend a #Quarantine.
But: staying in room = no training.
Since March 2020, Vienna (#Austria) runs a wastewater #COVID19 surveillance.

This week, they suddenly found markers that were "different". They´re checking now if (and what type of) a #SARSCoV2 variant is circulating...
#Vienna is running voluntary #COVID19 mass rapid (antigen) tests, this week.
Out of the "positive" test results, they picked
83 samples.
14 of them seem to be "some #Variant" (~17%).

They´ll go into sequencing, to see if it´s #B117, or whatever...
#Vienna spokesperson brings up some points:
~"with today´s hints of that amount of #variants in Vienna, it might as well be that #B117 has been around for much longer than we thought"
~"if the #variants have been around for weeks/months, how do we interpret our #COVID19 curves?
Did the variants cause our (#Austria) peak in November?
Are our case numbers not going down because variants are here, now?
We simply can´t tell..."
#Portugal also thinks
the ´UK´ variant #B117 may have been introduced "before Christmas".
It´s arrival to Portugal might have happened "between September and December"...
One of the overrun hospitals in #Portugal (Torres Vedras, 2 nights ago).
There are 3 nursing homes affected by large outbreaks.
The hospital itself had to deal with 157 internal #COVID19 cases, already.

They managed to create 21 additional beds over night
Torres Vedras (#Portugal) has ~80.000 citizens.
1.013 of them are "active #COVID19 cases" right now.

(That´s one third of the 3.260 cases they ever had, during this pandemic).

1.671 are now in quarantine.
251 are waiting for test results.
cm-tvedras.pt/artigos/detalh… Image
(Well... #Portugal´s rise in hospital admissions is too tall for twitter - it´ll be cut off in the tweet.)

It suddenly happened on December 26, when everything was looking good,
just like "the wave" would soon be over...
coronavirus.rr.sapo.pt Image
There´s some weird artefact in #Portugal´s dashboard.

Yesterday, confirmed #COVID19 cases in the
age group of 10-19 year olds jumped
from ~48.000
to ~274.000

As if someone had decided to start testing all school kids...
(🤔Not sure what really happened)
arcgis.com/apps/opsdashbo… Image
This was (is?) #Portugal´s plan:

"In this #Lockdown we will keep #schools fully open.
We cannot sacrifice an entire generation of students.

Earlier we had seen: schools are safe places.
And we´ll introduce frequent mass rapid antigen testings..."
Meanwhile in🇨🇭Switzerland´s Ticino:

A school noticed a #COVID19 infection in a student on January 7.
Then another one, and another...
School went on.

It was yesterday that they received lab results:
it´s ´UK´ variant #B117.
NOW the school is quarantined
www4.ti.ch/area-media/com… Image
´nough of schools - it´s sunday, finally !
😁Let´s flick on the sport websites and enjoy some...
😦ah, no.
No tennis.

(if I counted right, that´s the third plane, already)🙄
#COVID19 #Quarantine #AustralienOpen #Melbourne
A warning from #Denmark.

"it looks like the wave is receding.
And it really does. But there´s something hidden underneath that might surface soon..."

(Okay, official text in next tweet...)
ourworldindata.org/coronavirus/co… Image
#B117 is still rising in #Denmark

Week 49: 0.2%
50: 0.5%
51: 0.9%
52: 1.9%
53: 2.9%
01: ~3.6%
02: ~8%

"The numbers over all are constantly going down. But in fact, this effect is just the non-#B117 variants..."
"#B117 cases are growing as predicted."🔎📈
ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede… Image
In normal times, Manaus (#Brazil) is self sufficient with oxygen (28.000 m3/day).
Now, with #COVID19, their hospitals need 75.000 m3/day.

"As support, we now start to send them 30.000 m3 per day..."

A week ago, it was discovered that one UK tourist had started a chain of #B117 infections in #Wengen (#Switzerland).
Contact tracing soon found ~28+ infected contacts.

Testing was then offered to all inhabitants:
970 tested,
7 positive ("only", they say)
jungfrauzeitung.ch/artikel/187556/ Image
"Only 7" of 970 tested positive, in a week.
That´s a ~720 incidence rate.

"No, we´re not an extraordinary hotspot. If you´d look in other villages around, you´d find similar numbers..."
(this🇨🇭tourism director from #Wengen convinces me...
to stay away)
jungfrauzeitung.ch/artikel/187444/ Image
Shortly before the start of the winter holidays, some schools in #Ontario (Canada) started to see more and more #COVID19 cases among staff & students.

It was contemplated if schools should stay closed/online for a while...
Recent data from #Ontario:

17.6% of tested kids in age group "0-13 years" returned 'positive' results.
(15.1% in age group 14-17)

It's unclear why this happened (to become apparent) as soon as school holidays started.
As "1 in 5" children tested positive (during holidays),
#Ontario refrained from opening schools.
All I can say is... 🤷
(and don´t ask me about current State of Emergency rules, there in Ontario - that´s even more confusing)
One more clarification:
it seems #Portugal´s dashboard sys-admin woke up to a shock this morning😱
and swiftly corrected the "220.000 children have become infected over night" artefact of yesterday.

Everything´s fine😑 it´s ´just´ ~2.000 over the weekend.
arcgis.com/apps/opsdashbo… Image
A follow up on the #B117 outbreak in Wengen (#Switzerland):

Yes, they found "only 7" in 970 local villagers had been infected.
In fact there had been many more. Most of them tourists, who had already returned home, before tests started...
After spending their holidays skiing with their family in Wengen (during the #B117 outbreak),
2 kids returned home a week ago and went to school.
(Bremgarten, Switzerland)

They brought #B117 with them
The entire school (and families) are quarantined, now
When #Switzerland´s authorities realized #B117 infections were spreading at tremendous speed in Wengen, they changed quarantine rules.

Secondary contacts should also quarantine.

This means:
Your entire family, if one kid in your kid´s class is infected.
telebasel.ch/2021/01/18/120… Image
Another school with (potential) #B117 contacts in Oberwil, #Switzerland.
Authorities wanted to test kids & families, today.

But some parents would "prefer not to be tested..."
Peculiar timing for this tweet.
But yes, let´s remember:

there´s always a person behind the mask
Behind the mask, there may be a smile.
Behind the smile, there may be today´s actual mood.

After all, it´s a job.
Sometimes it means:
disinfecting your guests´ luggage.

A job that might get done with a stern face, today.
At #Kempinski in #StMoritz 🇨🇭
kempinski.com/en/st-moritz/g… Image
There´s a #COVID19 cluster at 2 luxury hotels in #StMoritz, #Switzerland.

it´s said:
- it´s the ´South Africa" variant
- personnel is quarantined
- guests are allowed to leave after a "negative" test

(schools in town are closed now,
mass test tomorrow)
gr.ch/DE/Medien/Mitt… Image
The second luxury hotel in #StMoritz is said to have the strictest #COVID19 prevention measures.

So everyone is shocked it happened.

(But it´d also been said for a while: our usual measures might not be enough for the new virus variants, like #501V2)
badruttspalace.com/wp-content/upl… Image
What a rollercoaster ride.

#Ireland´s Level 5 #Lockdown came into force ~2.5 weeks ago, when cases were still lower than today.

It came too late to prevent the steep surge soon after.
And as short as it seems to have been - it had a profound effect...
covid19ireland-geohive.hub.arcgis.com Image
After Ireland´s #COVID19 peak:

~"One in ten in the population is now either a case or a contact.
So we advise everyone:
-regard yourself as a contact
-stay at home."

Numbers are still too high to resume contact tracing...
~"There´s no point in hoping we´ll stop the ´UK´ variant from becoming dominant in #Ireland. But we can slow it down."

("3 cases of variants from Brazil and from South Africa had been identified, and they were confined without onward transmissions")
So the ´UK´ variant #B117 has made its way

from Ireland
via Marseille
and has now arrived in #Morocco...

(🚢in 80 days around the world🌍)
After analyzing samples, the #Czech Republic has announced:

"around 10% of our samples are the #B117 variant."

And they vividly describe the variant´s capability:
"It can do in 6 days, what the old variant would have taken 10 days to do".⏱️💨
Various variants in various places of #Germany:
🔸40+ cases of #B117 in a nursing home
🔸Returnees from South Africa trip infected a befriendet family with #501V2
🔸A (completely) new variant was found in a hospital outbreak in Bavaria (properties unknown)
From today, Germany´s new "Surveillance & Sequencing" ordinance will be active.

It simply guarantees the state will take over the costs of sequencing (for 5-10% of samples from positive #COVID19 cases)

(🤷didn´t find any further strategy in the text)
There´ll be a #Lockdown evaluation meeting of Germany´s state representatives, today.
Late at night, they discussed options with some experts.

And there was a plan-proposal on the tables.
A "#NoCovid" plan...
zeit.de/wissen/gesundh… Image
Key elements of #Germany´s 🇩🇪proposed #NoCovid plan:

- get some experts from Australia and New Zealand
- install a hard #Lockdown, until incidence rate is down to 10.
- then bring it to zero.
- enjoy d0nut days

And the prominent example is:
zeit.de/wissen/gesundh… Image
Oh. Melbourne.
And tennis.
That´ll be Germany
and soccer,
Is this it?
The red area to the left.
"Norfriesland" district.

It had one of #Germany´s lowest #COVID19 incidence rates,
14 days ago: (37.4)

That rate is at ~162 today....
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… Image
What happened in #Nordfriesland?

"We had #COVID19 before,

so on January 4 we thought we could control the situation as we always had done before.
After a few days we became aware - this time, it would not be possible...

several wards reported outbreaks"
nordfriesland.de/Quicknavigatio… Image
4 days ago, the situation in #Nordfriesland became tense:

due to #COVID19 outbreaks, both district hospitals signed off (no new admittances accepted)
Healthcare personnel is under "work quarantine" now:
Those who are infected but asymptomatic, work
nordfriesland.de/Quicknavigatio… Image
In some places, infections have already been introduced into #Nordfriesland´s community.

Before it started, there were~380 in #quarantine.
This numbers is ~3.000, today.

~2.200 of them are hospital staff, visitors and patients.
nordfriesland.de/PDF/21_01_18_C… Image
There´s some ´irritation´:

Some #COVID19 infected elderly patients had been discharged from #Nordfriesland´s hospitals and brought back to their nursing homes.

Authority: "if they are not in need of medical assistance, they cannot stay in hospital"...
nordschleswiger.dk/de/tondern-sue… Image
There´s no explanation for what caused the abnormally rapid spread of #COVID19 cases in #Nordfriesland.

But just to the north of Nordfriesland lies #Syddanmark.
The region with the highest proportion of #B117 cases in Denmark...
week 1: 5.8%
last week: 9%
ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede… Image
#Sweden does (some basic) sequencing, to follow the spread of new #SARSCoV2 variants.

They found #B117

Jan7: 17 cases, of which (5) without any link to UK
Jan12: 25 (8)
Jan19: 55 (16)
folkhalsomyndigheten.se/smittskydd-ber… Image
Germany's first fatal #COVID19 reinfection has now happened in #Baiersbronn?

That's also the town of Germany's first #B117 case...
(came with one of the last flights from #UK, December 20)
Just a little backstory on how #B117 came to #Baiersbronn,
on December 21:

(~A man managed to get his "positive" daughter out of isolation at Frankfurt airport. Then drove her home to Baiersbronn.

That´s a ~3 hour ride in their car...)
A story that came up in #Norway, yesterday:

On December 18, a man from Bjørnafjorden went to pick up visitors from UK at the airport.
The ride back home took ~40 minutes.
They were wearing masks.
Still, #B117 infection was transmitted in the car...
(Yes, I omit the intro.
Let´s concentrate on the girl)

A little girl in #Belgium got infected with #B117.
She infected ~her entire family.
And a classmate at school.
At home, that classmate infected her mother, who works as a teacher at another school...
ad.nl/buitenland/vla… Image
The little belgian girl´s #B117 infection caused a quarantine for 5.000 people:
-kids at 2 schools
-and all those kids´ contacts (families at home)

(Or it was caused by "authorities who decided", or "the girl´s mother who brought B117 from Switzerland"🙄)
Tests at the second school in #Belgium (where the #B117 infected teacher was working) showed:
out of 1.700 tested
14 were #COVID19 "positive".

~Only 2 of them with #B117...
kontich.be/persbericht-co… Image
Tests at the belgian school where the 2 #B117 "index case girls" went to class for ~2.5 days showed:
another 2 girls had been infected with #B117.
And one outsider boy with ´classic´ #COVID19.

(BTW: the article lists plenty more outbreaks at schools...)
Update on #Germany´s first fatal #COVID19 reinfection:
the patient was 74 years old
had recovered from a first infection in April´20
got infected once more in December.

"There´ll be no sequencing, since he had no travel history"
So unknown, if #B117 etc🤷

Civil Protection of #Lisbon
requests immediate closure of all schools
military support
medical personnel from abroad
The community of Mafra, #Portugal (~75.000 citizens)
says, they´d have 75 school classes in quarantine, at the moment.
Accounting for ~2.000 students
(educational staff not included)

"it´s disrupting our entire contact tracing system"
cm-mafra.pt/pages/1144?new… Image
"Since #school classes began on January 6,
the age group 13-17 has a higher #COVID19 incidence rate than older people and continues to rise exponentially,
as does 18-24."
"The #COVID19 pandemic has gained momentum in #Portugal since Christmas, when restrictions on gatherings and movement were eased for four days."
4 days...
4 days...
of eased restrictions
a month ago
caused this?
#Portugal #COVID19
arcgis.com/apps/opsdashbo… Image
Since December 1, #Portugal has sequenced 27.096 samples from positive #COVID19 cases.

They found something:
in the beginning ~1%
now it´s ~13%

They say it´s #B117.
But could also be something else
(with the same "Spike gene dropout/SGTF")...
virological.org/t/tracking-sar… Image
"What we have ahead of us is probably the greatest tragedy of recent centuries,
if it is even possible to find in #Portugal's history anything similar to what is and will happen in terms of the number of deaths,"

(Advisor to Health Authority)
has offered medical help to #Portugal.

(proposal to take over some patients to care for them in Luxembourg, like they did for France)
"Not just the schools, we need to close everything!"

"Nobody understands what´s going on here. Maybe the UK-Variant (#B117) is already widespread..."

(Head of Infectiology, Central #Lisbon University Hospital Centre,
they´re treating 9 children, now)
#Portugal's football association opened their guesthouse, today.

It won't house national football teams - it will be used as field hospital for #COVID19 patients...
after new data came in
about #COVID19 infections,
the rapid spread of #B117,
the dramatic situation at hospitals

Portugal´s President made up his mind.
jornaleconomico.sapo.pt/en/noticias/pr… Image
After being urged by municipalities, school directors, unions and Portugal´s President,

still somewhat reluctantly,
Portugal´s Prime Minister announced:

Schools will close from friday

However, he stressed
"schools are not the main focus of transmission"
a rapid (antigen) test will not be recognized everywhere.

#France announced:
All EU travellers will need a PCR test, before entering french territory.

(from sunday on)
(for non-EU citizens, there may be some quarantine added, I guess)
And then...

26 students from #UK
came to Chamonix (#France)

They presented a "negative" PCR test.
Shortly after, they had first symptoms
14 test results are in: 12 #COVID19 "positive", remaining results will follow.
British tabloid has detailed background on the #COVID19 cluster among UK "students" in Chamonix, and how they ended up in #France

Meanwhile, 16 of them have tested "positive".
Unclear if it is #B117.
But they think they "caught it on the train in France"
The UK🇬🇧 "students" had booked a "Ski-instructor qualification" course
in... Verbier🇨🇭
(Maybe like the one below...)

As we all know, Switzerland demands #quarantine from UK travellers.
Someone found the "loophole" to spend the "quarantine" in France🇫🇷...
peakleaders.com/2020/12/become… Image
The "ski-instructor students" arrived in the mountain village in #France "by road, air or train" on January 13 - 17.

Some of them had tried to enter the Eurostar train in London with their equipment.

Seems even the train manager thought it was too absurd
The ´Brazil/Amazonas´ variant #P1 has arrived in #Germany.

Article below mentions the passenger was asymptomatic and was detected "positive" when arriving at Frankfurt.

(German articles state he was known to be positive while still on the flight (?!))
It´s 2 months, since the outbreak at a #school in the #Netherlands (later identified as #B117).

Now, first ressults from mass tests are in:
out of 27.000 samples from local citizens
242 were #COVID19 "positive" (~0.9%)
´only´ ~29 of them carried #B117.

It seems, #B117 hadn´t spread much outside the Willibrord #School setting in the #Netherlands.

But at the school itself, it was found that
70 out of 684 testees carried the #B117 variant
(kids, staff and their families at home!).

"~Something's brewing underneath.
The real numbers aren't as good as statistics might suggest.
We should be holding our breath..."

(some regions reversed their positive trend and started climbing again)
On January 7,
a case of #COVID19 was registered in Lisbon, #Portugal.

our retrospective sequencing now discovered: it was #501V2, the 'South Africa' variant.

We believe it was a single case"...
That person on the flight #Brazil-#Germany,
he had a positive PCR test.
For reasons unknown, he still made it onto the plane.

German authorities were warned and awaited him.
A specific test showed: the 'Brazil' variant.

All on board were quarantined...
the rules of the game are simple:

Wherever a #COVID19 (variant) case pops up,
all contacts
and their secondary contacts
go into quarantine.

If you feel comfortable with this,
Mr. "Open everything up",
go ahead.
Bring your country to a standstill.
Mayor of Oslo (#Norway):

"Today is a heavy day in our city.
We´ve been trying so hard for so long already.

I have a great understanding for everyone who today feels that they are fed up."

The entire region will go into #Lockdown.
They found #B117
oslo.kommune.no/politikk/byrad… Image
Yesterday, the #B117 variant was found in samples from 2 fatalities at a nursing home in Nordre Follo
(a municipality near #Oslo).
The problem:
those samples had been taken ~3 weeks ago...
(January 3)
fhi.no/nyheter/2021/e… Image
Further research showed:
-no known source of infection
-multiple contacts already infected
-suspected spread outside the facility to kindergarten

#Norway´s first #B117 community transmission had been active for more than 3 weeks, now!
⚠️Regional #Lockdown
nordrefollo.kommune.no/nyheter/2021/j… Image
"Nearby" communities start urging:

Everyone who has been to: #Oslo region in the last week:
-reduce contacts
-get tested - even if you feel no symptoms !

("nearby" in #Norway scale is ~300km)
#Denmark gives out a warning
(to whom it may concern...), that

📢"#Norway is introducing the strictest restrictions since March 2020, due to outbreaks of #B117 in Oslo region"
#Sweden urges

"Norwegian authorities fear a major #outbreak of the new British virus variant in the #Oslo area.

🚨Everyone who has been to #Norway in the last 14 days:
-get tested immediately !
-self isolate for at least 7 days !
-follow up test also!"🚨
was chosen Norway´s most popular new word in 2020.

I can see it in widespread use again, today...

(It means "Quarantine for the Southerners (~Oslo)". Some municipalities in #Norway´s North introduced it during the first #COVID19 wave).
nrk.no/sorlandet/nye-… Image
"#Oslo should be treated like a foreign country"
Tracking mobile phones, closing alcohol shops and venues, restricting access to hospitals...

Municipalities in the #Lockdown region´s vicinity prepare measures to deter Oslofolk from coming.
🛑🚧#Sweden is about to install a complete entry ban from #Norway.🚧🛑

(Due to a #B117 variant outbreak in Norway´s Oslo region with unknown dimension, so far.)
Meanwhile in #Germany:

An outbreak of #B117 at a hospital in #Berlin has now expanded to 20 cases.
(14 patients, 6 staff)

It is likely the outbreak has already reached into the community,
as staff´s family members seem to display symptoms as well...
3 days ago, the same #Berlin hospital informed about some cases of #B117.
They had discovered them on Jan14, already:
-3 Patients
-no travel history (local transmission likely)
-no known source

"We brought this #Outbreak under control."
#B117& control?
berlin.de/aktuelles/berl… Image
The regional outbreak of #B117 seems to have entered #Oslo:

Earlier low infection numbers are gone.
Nursing homes see massive outbreaks
(150 infected, 40 new cases in the last 24 hours)

"This is different from the virus we had under control, before"
Bayreuth hospital (#Bavaria) had warned that their house had seen

"several #COVID19 outbreaks in recent days",
seemingly more aggressive than previous outbreaks.

They also mentioned it might be that #B117 had entered the hospital...
klinikum-bayreuth.de/aktuell/news/a… Image
(🙅‍♂️Omit reading these details.
They´re too complicated,
don´t add to your understanding,
and may cause some useless infuriation

It´s basically: Health authority admitting there had been a #B117 case arlier, but "~the Bayreuth hospital story is fake news")
As it turns out,
#Bayreuth hospital has very good reason to believe their suspiciously aggressive outbreaks might actually be #B117:

One #COVID19 patient they treated was a truck driver who had returned from #UK 🚛🇬🇧and fell ill...
(sequencing is pending)
br.de/nachrichten/ba… Image
Becoming #COVID19 "positive" after ⏰14 days in quarantine and 2 "negative" tests✅✅,
In a country that had virtually no sources of infection...
-Variant not yet clear

The #COVID19 case in #NewZealand had successfully passed quarantine✅
so she thought nothing special about her "light muscle pains", she developped 2 days after being released.

She visited 30 locations, before she became sceptical and got herself tested❌
News from #Faroe Islands.
It has something to do with "#B117".

The rest is up to your imagination.

yes, this is one language I don´t speak, so I threw it into an auto-translator.
I´m slightly confused about the last paragraph...🤔
news.fo/bretska-frabri… Image
#Norway´s Health Authority has found 17 cases of #B117, now (~250 more samples pending).

No cases were found outside the outbreak in Nordre Folle, so far.
"But it will come", according to FHI´s Director...
😣here we go...:

21:02h "Suspicious outbreaks of infection in Oslo"

#Norway´s Health Directorate fears #SARSCoV2 variant outbreaks in #Oslo.
"Some outbreaks are suspicious, because there are many cases in a short period of time"
Due to the "unclear situation",
the #Lockdown area around #Norway´s #B117 outbreak will be expanded.

Further 15 communities will be "shut down".
They actively asked to be included, to avoid influx of possibly infected visitors/customers from the outbreak.
helsedirektoratet.no/tema/beredskap… Image
Another urgent measure was just announced by #Norway´s Health Minister.
It is supposed to solve the #polkø problem.

(Many people made fun of it.
But it seems to be a serious issue.
No, they´re not queuing for a #COVID19 test...)
Vinmono(pol)et (kø=queue) polkø

"We´ll revise our decision and reopen the Vinmonopolet liquor stores in the #Lockdown area.
The sudden cut off from alcohol supply can expose people with severe alcohol dependence to health risks"
(Norway´s Health Minister)
When I said there was no other source of infection, it was sooooo "last wave".

Those new variants have a new set of skills.

Like infecting people who are "perfectly isolated" from each other. Even to #NewZealand standards.
Seeing the transmission in New Zealand´s #Quarantine,
our "best we can do" approach seems vastly inappropriate:

~1.500 "quarantined" staff from a hospital with confirmed #B117 outbreak commute home to their (not quarantined) families every day...
After 21 employees were tested #COVID19 "positive", an entire shift at Airbus
(500 employees, from 2 hangars,
with "potential contact in locker rooms, etc.")

goes into "voluntary quarantine at home"👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

(Variant not identified yet)
The #B117 outbreak in #Norway has grown to 25 detected infections, so far.

(but they're not finished with the 300 samples that might be related to this outbreak, yet...)

"Authorities think it started around Christmas".
A nursing home in Southern #Germany found 23 residents & staff to be #COVID19 "positive".

Good news: all are well, no symptoms.😊
And for 4 of them it's already the second time...😲

(possible #reinfection,
first time was April~May 2020)
"At 16:20 I received the call that we have 40 new cases of the English variant of the coronavirus,"
says head of Nordre Follo municipality.

It´s 65 #B117 cases in that town, now.
They say it´s likely all positive tests there might be the variant.
nrk.no/osloogviken/ha… Image
This shows occupation of Tokyo´s #COVID19 Intensive Care Units from November 2020 (31%) to today (107%)

www3.nhk.or.jp/news/special/c… Image
As #Japan´s hospitals became overcrowded,
some had to turn away "non-citical" #COVID19 patients.

(Starting November 2020,
rapidly increasing this January...)
"I was advised to be hospitalized but I refused,
to give priority to those who are more ill..."

This is how the impressive story of a single Tokyo mum and her fight against #COVID19 at home starts.

She was released from hospital, yesterday.
(her story):
www3.nhk.or.jp/news/html/2021… Image
Refusing to go to hospital.
Thinking ´the ambulance will surely be needed elsewhere´
Trying not to bother others...😔
Hanover, #Germany:

another #Reinfection,
after 6 weeks (!)

first time: #COVID19, November 27
second time: #B117, January 11

(~90 contacts at kindergartens, elementary school quarantined for "*at least* 14 days")
It should have been the "all clear",
after hospitals in #Nordfriesland had been closed for 10 days, due to large #COVID19 outbreaks...

But when the 1.200 staff were tested again, they found 21 new cases.
"We´re completely mystified"
(no variant known)
nordfriesland.de/Kreis-Verwaltu… Image
In #Denmark🇩🇰, #B117 seems to be taking up an ever larger part of infections:

Week 49: 0.2%
50: 0.5%
51: 0.9%
52: 1.9%
53: 2.9%
01: 4%
02: 7.4% (219 cases)
03: ~12,1% (99 cases, not final)

Overall, #COVID19 case numbers in DK are still decreasing.
🇩🇰Denmark´s #B117 proportion,
with graphics
and a database-link:
Busy day in Nordre Follo, at the center of #Norway´s #B117 outbreak.

They´ve been able to connect the last 40 #B117 cases to:
the nursing home
a health center
a kindergarten
an elementary school

They still don´t know where it started.
Multiple imports?
#Norway´s health authority has sequenced 245 (old) #COVID19 cases´ samples around the Nordre Follo outbreak, so far.
(150 to go)
65 were the #B117 variant.
What they can say:
"They have some connection to 6 other communities"...
#Norway´s health authorities found the case of a nursing home employee in #Oslo.
He was the first in a #COVID19 outbreak at his Oslo workplace, Jan 6.
He had some contact to Nordre Follo,
so they sequenced the old samples...
all #B117.
#Switzerland´s National #COVID19 Science Task Force has a new situation report out.
Here´s one key finding:

#B117 was somewhere around ~10%,
last week.
sciencetaskforce.ch/nextstrain-phy… Image
"Currently, it looks like🇨🇭infections are going down.
But if absolute #B117 case numbers keep increasing,
case numbers will soon start to rise again,

even if we KEEP our current measures UNCHANGED.

At the moment🇨🇭#B117 cases are doubling every week‼️"
sciencetaskforce.ch/wissenschaftli… Image
Oh, this is so tempting...
I nearly fell for it.

Only a few dark red spots are left.
Many are below "100" (7 day incidence).
Some have already broken the "magical 50" barrier, when everything was promised to be fine again...
in earlier days, before #B117.
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… Image
A week ago, when Bayreuth hospital (#Bavaria) became wary "we think some variant may be circulating- we have many outbreaks",
local authorities weren´t too convinced.

Then, the first 30 samples were sequenced:
11 are #B117.

2 Hospitals in #Lockdown,
klinikum-bayreuth.de/aktuell/news/a… Image
And still, #Bayreuth authorities aren´t too worried.

There´s no idea, how the cases may have contracted #B117.
"we´ll treat contacts of #B117 cases as we treat all contacts of #COVID19 cases.
There´ll be no quarantine for secondary contacts"...
bayreuther-tagblatt.de/nachrichten_me… Image
This evening,
the #Oxygen supply at Sintra hospital couldn't keep up with the high demand of 360 #COVID19 patients.
It didn't "collapse", but it seems the flow wasn't enough => some patients evacuated.
ICU is okay (takes relatively little O2).
As sequencing is incredibly slow, nobody can determine the current situation.
Today, the #Netherlands do know what it was 3 weeks ago:
#B117 had a share of 8.6%.

"And last week, we guess, it was every THIRD case"

And #B117 reproduced with a factor R~1,27
rivm.nl/nieuws/Britse-… Image
😴missing the bus...

There was a #COVID19 case, in a🇳🇱physiotherapy setting, on Jan6.

Later it turned out there had been some travel to South Africa.
3 weeks later, sequencing says:
18 cases are connected, they all were the #501V2 variant.
🚌💨 🏃
Seven more communities in #Norway fear current #COVID19 cases might be carrying #B117,
as they have links to Nordre Follo.

Outside current Lockdown area:
Øvre Eiker
Nesodden (maybe)

already in #Lockdown area:

#Cluster5 is back.

The #SARSCoV2 variant that spread among minks, so millions of them were culled in Denmark.
And the entire region of North Jutland was closed down.

It was believed it had gone extinct

2 (old) cases have been found in Germany
They said they´d reopen elementary #schools on monday (because ~´children don´t transmit infections much´)

Only minutes before their press conference
news came in:
There´s a massive outbreak
(with some #SARSCoV2 variant)
at a kindergarten in Freiburg.

Announcement is postponed. Image
A shock for #France.
All their current measures,
even the 12 hour curfew, every day...

They don´t work anymore.

Is it because schools reopened (Jan4),
or everyone is working again,
or effect of new #SARSCoV2 variants?

They urgently try to find out, now.
francetvinfo.fr/sante/maladie/… Image
Yesterday, hospitals of #Paris region said they believe #B117 might have a share of 9.4%, there.
Today, a clear statement followed:

"It seems, the way we manage this right now, the current ascending plateau of infections will become an exponential curve."
franceinter.fr/societe/si-on-… Image
Authorities in The #Netherlands claim they have found the contacts of the ´South Africa´ variant #501V2 case at a physiotherapy centre.
(First symptoms January 6, but only now discovered)...

They all will get tested, now.
All 350 contacts.
A large outbreak of #COVID19 stopped a construction site in Oslo (#Norway).

34 are infected, so far.
Some of the workers reside in Nordre Follo (the current #B117 hotspot)...
"Almost everyone (146 workers) involved in the project is in quarantine".🚧👷‍♂️🏗️
A school in Schaffhausen (#Switzerland) has closed.
There´s a #COVID19 (some variant) case.

"This closure is not a quarantine...
it´s just to reassure the parents and the worried teachers and students."

😏ookayyy... whatever you´d like to name it.
stadt-schaffhausen.ch/News.316.0.htm… Image
Seems, the kindergarten in Freiburg (#Germany) realized first #COVID19 cases 2 weeks ago.🙄

That didn´t stop the state´s idea of opening up more...
it was just today´s result "it´s caused by some #SARSCoV2 variant" that blew it all up
swr.de/swraktuell/bad… Image
2 days ago,
#Portugal mentioned:
"We still have beds available. The real problem is personnel."

Over 22.000 nurses and doctors have been infected, so far.
More than 10.000 are not able to work, at the moment.

Transferring patients might be an option...
Yesterday, the community of Torres Vedras asked Portugal´s foreign minister for urgent help.
As there are 8 large clusters in the city, the hospital is overrun.

The mayor was now pleading for 5 doctors and 10 nurses from abroad. They would pay for them...
Today, the Mayor of Torres Vedras received answers from doctors from Brazil, Angola, Venezuela...

He was still waiting for a reaction from #Portugal´s foreign minister.

And they just had another nursing home outbreak this afternoon.
Also wednesday, a small group of medics from #Germany did some reconnaissance at #Sintra hospital.
(The one that had too many patients for their oxygen supply).
It was an "informal" mission

But german embassy just confirmed:
there´s talks with #Portugal.
Unreal ´déjà vu´
for #NewZealand, yesterday:

ONCE AGAIN, reports came in
that someone had been released from a quarantine hotel,
after 2 weeks
and 2 "negative" tests...

and then turned out to be "positive".

But maybe they were "false positive"?
After more tests, it became clear:

Those weren´t "residual artefacts of earlier infections"...
the 2 persons who had just been cleared & released from #NewZealand´s #quarantine were carrying a FRESH infection

with the ´South Africa´ variant.
After #NewZealand´s first "post-quarantine infection"
people´s trust had already degraded.

stuff.co.nz/national/healt… Image
The #NewZealand #Quarantine hotel that turned out to actually spread #501V2 infections is now closed for new entries.

And those who already left
are now asked to isolate themselves...

wherever they may be
(some have travelled abroad).
The fate of a not so successfull #SARSCoV2 variant:

Denmark kept monitoring the "Mink" mutated variant.
After the large outbreak in late summer, it faded away.
In week 1/2021 they sequenced 18% of all #COVID19 cases.
The mink variant had disappeared.
ssi.dk/-/media/cdn/fi… Image
After a kindergarten in Freiburg,
#Germany´s southwest state has now found #B117 in a 85 year old senior in #Stuttgart.

He should have been safe and sound in his nursing home, with no travel contacts.

"It seems #B117 is already circulating, here..."
This thread started one year ago.

And I still use this collection of what we did in 2009.
I´d say: we´ve changed a lot since then...
our plan isn´t any better,
but we´re a lot crazier, more confused, now.🙄
I thought about cutting off this thread
and start new topic related sub-threats instead.
Just to arrange stuff more neatly

But where should I file this next one?
Authorities say
"the situation is so incredibly complex",
they just fenced a whole area in.
🤦Okay, thread goes on...
-foreign workers
-large construction site
-living in tight conditions
-one came from UK
-quarantine breaker
-one critically ill now
-youth center on same site
-massive variant outbreak
-´risk of fleeing quarantinees´
-South #Germany, Schelklingen
~"We knew the #SARSCoV2 variants were imminent.
But we hoped we had more time (to have schools open for a while)
At the #Freiburg kindergarten, 18 cases are now confirmed as ´South Africa´ variant

Sequencing shows: 2-3% of all cases are a variant already"
"The idea to gradually reopen schools has become obsolete.

We will make an effort to try sequencing EVERY single positive #COVID19 case, to see how far the variant has spread.

Schools will stay open for children of essential workers."
Norway´s #B117 hotspot Nordre Follo kept schools open for children of essential workers.

Yesterday it started: 4
this morning 7
this afternoon 15
#COVID19 cases at a primary school.

"We believe it´s #B117"
Hundreds of essential workers quarantined, now.
A new "real time" analysis (s-gap detection) enables #Portugal to get a better picture of the spread of ´UK´ variant #B117:

In & around #Lisbon, it has a share of 50%, already.
(In oher places ´just´ 30%...)
And finally today,
#Portugal authorizes recruiting nurses and doctors from abroad.

They will be needed to help in the massive #COVID19 waves.
(Standard contract length may be up to 1 year).
#Ireland´s latest NPHET meeting brings an insight into
how #B117 reacts.

And what measures will be needed
for how long
to keep it from getting out of hand...
According to NPHET
"#Ireland´s population has worked incredibly hard
to bring down transmissions".

Not only that-
as it has so little chance to transmit, they´ve also slowed progress of #B117.
It stands at 63%, now.

It will become dominant, eventually.
But it will happen slower Image
#Ireland has this nifty key indicator of
"how many contacts did a #COVID19 case have".

What not to do: open things up, so people have ~4-5 contacts again (December, that provoked the outbreak)

What works to slow down #B117:
reduce contacts to ~2 Image
With the CURRENT measures, #Ireland manages an R of ~0.4-0.7

"If we can keep this up
- cases will continue to drop (slowly)
- hospitals will see less strain (in the long term)
- by the end of February we could be where we were at the beginning of December"

"We are maintaining an extraordinary effort...
we need to maintain full pressure for several more weeks,

to give ourselves strategic options for the future"

(🤔Open up = give it out of hands?)

Link to entire NPHET latest slide-set:
assets.gov.ie/121280/f9981ed… Image
"Full pressure for several more weeks"
means for #Ireland:
#LEVEL5 restrictions will be in place
until March (for now).
gov.ie/en/publication… Image
It had been eerily quiet
around the #COVID19 variant outbreak among construction workers in south #Germany...

must have been, because everyone was just too busy testing all the contacts.

Over 1.000, so far.
And multiple other clusters, now...
I'd rather have a system, where
a "negative" #COVID19 test would be valid as a one-day-travel pass on public transport,

and a "positive" test would earn you 14 days free delivery of your favorite food to your home address...
A swiss journalist reports on Native American #Winnebago tribe.

Their culture is defined by the elders.
Only 100 elders still speak their traditional language.

#COVID19 is a real threat.
In #Portugal, one #COVID19 indicator is the number of ambulances queuing at hospitals.
The largest line has now decreased from 46 to 6 ambulances waiting.
But that's due to a new pre-screening, turning people away who are not eligible for treatment
Despite the recent outbreaks of #B117, #Norway´s overall #COVID19 test positivity rate has declined to as low as 0.8%
fhi.no/sv/smittsomme-… Image
It is still not clear, what effect #B117 infections will have, if they become dominant, and there´s no clear picture, where they have already spread...
but #Norway intends to ease restrictions in the Lockdown area around Nordre Follo, soon.
nrk.no/norge/regjerin… Image
Norway´s Education Minister:
"Being able to attend kindergarten and school is important both for play, learning and for countering loneliness and isolation,"
so communities in #B117 Lockdown may decide whether they return to full presence school classes
Norway´s Minister of Children and Family Affairs:
"I am glad that we can make everyday life (in the #B117 Lockdown area) a little easier.
For people under the age of 20, we open football training, handball or choir practice again."

(🤔 choir practice?...)
In Norway´s view
"The main problem is import of cases", so #Norway has locked their borders.

One last loophole is closed, now:
"As falsified attestations of earlier #COVID19 infections might be presented at the border, this will no longer be accepted as an entry waiver" Image
2 days ago, #Norway´s Health Directorate issued a warning #B117 outlook:

"particularly relevant considering #Oslo´s situation right now where we see declining infection rates:
Cases may seem to go down.
But it may become challenging 2 weeks later"
helsedirektoratet.no/tema/beredskap… Image
("wild infections" - nobody knows where they came from)

#Oslo has 3 of them
(they are all #B117 variants)

(p.s.: one of my favorite 🇳🇴words is still: Nettbrett)
(according to news)
The #Netherlands´ Outbreak Management Team OMT advises the dutch government to reopen primary schools and childcare.
The OMT seems to be split up - some members were against this advise.
"This poses a real risk"
Last night,
#Portugal´s airforce performed a #COVID19 medevac flight.

They transferred 3 critical ICU patients.
They were brought FROM the capital region #Lisbon TO the island of #Madeira.

Beds on the mainland are full.
#Portugal´s INSA is very busy, so they just retweet articles of interviews they gave:

"at the moment #B117 has a share of ~35-40%.
That might be 65% in ~3 weeks"

"It has a weekly growth rate of ~90%"
(its share doubles nearly every week)
Some good news from #Portugal:
the hospital of Amadora (where O2 pressure wasn´t enough to support all ~360 #COVID19 patients, last tuesday)
has a backup oxygen tank, now.

Sintra hospital will also get one.
facebook.com/hospitalfernan… Image
#Japan´s military is responding to an Okinawa island, where more than 100 #COVID19 infections happened in 4 days, affecting many nursing home residents.

They will get instructions from "veterans" who were also deployed to the Diamond Princess🛳️in 2020.
#Berlin´s hospital says they
"have the #B117 outbreak under control".
After one week and 30 cases, the infection chain has been identified and stopped.
"Work quarantine" for medical staff will continue (if they had potential contact)...
Bayreuth hospital (#Bavaria) has ~23 cases of #B117.
While they had no overview of the ´diffuse infections´, they started to ease "working quarantine" rules "pragmatically":

-use of public transport ✅😷(FFP2 mask)
-staff´s children back to kindergarten✅
#Bayreuth citizens aren´t too convinced the "working quarantine" is safe enough for #B117.

Hospital personnel is refused at petrol stations, their children isolated at kindergarten, neighbors are worried when bumping into them at home...

Twitter is buzzing with tweets like this,
right now
"The guard was working on the same floor as a positive ´UK´variant case"

His household contacts have tested ´negative´.
However, we can expect that they will become positive"

"Dramatic. Action. Immediately.
That´s the (Brisbane) model we´re following..."
Dramatic. Reaction. Immediately.
Brisbane / Queensland know their stuff...
#WesternAustralia #COVID19
Meanwhile in #Germany... Image
a german minister noted that with the new virus variants the old "incidence 50" limit might not be enough.
Maybe the #Lockdown would have to be extended beyond February...
(#ZeroCovid is not an official policy,
actually, there´s no target set)
With a german standard of "incidence 50"
(50 cases / 100.000 inhabitants per week)
there would be
tracing for ~900 such cases,
in Perth
Antwerp´s University Hospital (#Belgium) has a mobile test team.
They ride around in their "coBUSters" bus, visiting schools and taking kids´ PCR tests.

They´ve been doing screenings and interventions in #COVID19 outbreaks,
for a couple of weeks, now...
uza.be/mobiel-testteam Image
First results of #Belgium´s mobile testing at schools:

~"We find #COVID19 infections mainly in the 5-12 year olds. They don´t show much symptoms.

But when we traced their contacts, we found:
they infect their families.
#Schools are infection sources."
The easing of Norway´s #B117 Lockdown might be obsolete.

4 communities around Nordre Follo now have outbreaks.
Infections seem to have spread from an ice rink hall.
There are already 11 cases, with secondary contacts infected.

400 are quarantined, now
It doesn´t need a fancy #B117 variant...
It seems some outbreaks in #Norway´s Nordre Follo were caused by the "traditional" #SARSCoV2 virus.

One primary school (Tårnåsen school) has 34 cases:
19 students
11 close contacts
4 staff
(all the "old" variant)
nordrefollo.kommune.no/informasjon-om… Image
#Portugal´s intensive care units treat 858 patients, today.
That´s the highest number ever.

The registered number of #COVID19 cases is now 16 times higher than it had been during the first wave, in March/April last year...
"This variant spares no-one"

The childrens´ infectiology unit in Lisbon has #COVID19 patients of age 12 days to 17 years.
And "it´s not just precautionary", as it was in the first wave.

They carry very high viral loads (Ct ~9-10)!
#Austria has proposed to take some patients from #Portugal for treatment.
Seems the "informal reconaissance" a few days ago has now turned into an official support mission:
Military medics from #Germany will be on their way to #Portugal, next week.
"Good news" for children, parents and teachers🙄
in the #Netherlands:

Elementary schools and kindergartens will open again on February 8.

There will be tests for teachers.
And if one kid gets #COVID19, the whole class will be quarantined for 5 days.
(Part of) the #Netherlands´ idea is:
-opening primary #schools and kindergartens will bring "disadvantages" (= infections will rise)

-this could be compensated, if all other measures (including the ´not so popular´ curfew) would stay in force

(hmmmn,🤨interesting experiment...) Image
And then, "inside sources" in the #Netherlands claim

"If case numbers keep on falling,
the (´not so popular´) curfew might be lifted on February 10."

That´s 2 days after schools reopened.

(🙄I´d like to have independent observers for this experiment...)
Reasoning for the call to ease more restrictions seems to be: "Case numbers in the #Netherlands are as low as October 1!"

they´re also ~as low/high as they were on December 1😐,
the day the current wave set in...🙄)
nos.nl/artikel/236675… Image
Meanwhile in #Australia:
No new cases in #Perth over night.

But this is expected to change:
the "index case" (guardian at quarantine hotel) has just been confirmed to carry #B117.
And ~60 close contacts are identified...
A maskless man stood outside a supermarket in Western #Australia´s #Lockdown area. He was offered a free mask from police.

He refused it.

📰"The man has been arrested, charged and denied bail after refusing to wear a protective face mask."🧑‍⚖️
In a press conference,
#Oslo´s Health Councillor just announced:

"Oslo has control over #B117."

Nearly all 61 cases have been traced and connected.
Only for 6 cases, tracing has not been completed, yet.
"#Oslo can´t continue the strict measures we had last week just for precaution. The challenge will be to keep infection numbers down while gradually & controlled reopening our city.
Infection numbers and knowledge of #B117 determine how fast it will go"
Frome tomorrow on,

#Oslo will have less distancing & cohorting at schools.
(Individual) sports will open for young children, again.
School swimming will resume.
Meanwhile in Halden (#Norway), near Oslo:
An outbreak at the local ice hall happened during "sports activities / ice hockey for the children".

65 are infected, one is already known as being a #B117 case.

"We should never have done it" (the kids´ sports)
Sarpsborg (#Norway) also has some suspected #B117 cases, who were at the "Comet"´s ice hockey training in the Halden ice hall.

They also have 15 further local #B117 cases/suspects.
Seems they´re cautious, but not too worried
as they "have a good overview"
sarpsborg.com/aktuelt/-har-g… Image
"We followed the guidelines that apply to children and amateur sports"
(Ice Hockey Club Halden, Norway)

"~They did their best.
No one was able to predict how contagious this virus really is...."
(Mayor of Halden)
#Norway #B117
(Most of) #Portugal may have already passed the peak of infections.

It´s the area around Lisbon, with its infections ´at brutally high levels´, that keeps the country´s average from falling.

(The yellow curve is #Lisbon. It is dipping every monday)
publico.pt/2021/02/01/soc… Image

"5 days after #Portugal´s schools were closed, the incidence in age groups 6-12 & 13-17 years began to fall at national level.

The closure of schools was decisive..."
#Norway´s Health Minister:

"If we had a #ZeroCovid policy, we would have had to live in a regime that none of us had tolerated.

It is very difficult to find a balance.
And we may not yet have the full answer when it comes to the new virus variant,..."
For #Norway´s Halden community
it´s not difficult to find an answer to their #B117 ice hockey outbreak:

19 school classes (together with staff and families) are quarantined.
So schools will close alltogether.
halden.kommune.no/aktuelt/rodt-n… Image
A rare view into the traces of #COVID19 in #France´s sewage water:

"There may be a trend, but we are at a very high level - far above March´s ´deconfinement´ levels.
It´s more like the levels we had back in September"
They know it.
They know what is going to happen.

So why do the #Netherlands open primary schools and "think about" further schools?
Why do they promise to "eliminate the curfew, if case numbers keep falling"?
Is it to say
"We tried - and it sadly didn´t work"?
Is it a show?
The #Netherlands know: before X-mas, teenagers got infected by other teens and "sometimes" infected their families. That went down a lot, with the holidays/lockdown.

After the festive period is over, it´s the adults, who get infected at work, now...
rijksoverheid.nl/onderwerpen/co… Image
The #Netherlands found,
primary school students, infected with #B117,
might be much more likely to spread infections to their families
and they seem to spread it faster, than with the old variant.
rijksoverheid.nl/onderwerpen/co… Image
And there´s this one line of text,
in that recent report to the #Netherlands´ House of Representatives.

It just says:
"We think, last week ~HALF OF ALL NEW infections in NL were the ´UK´ variant #B117."

It GREW at a reproduction rate of R~"1.27"
rijksoverheid.nl/binaries/rijks… Image
What´s the issue ?
#COVID19 numbers in the #Netherlands peaked on December 20, with ~13.000 new cases, that day.
Yesterday, it was a mere 3.300 new cases - that´s certainly not rising, is it ?????
coronadashboard.rijksoverheid.nl/landelijk/posi… Image
Here´s the issue.

-in week 2, 19.8% of new cases in the #Netherlands had been #B117
-In week 4, ~50% of new cases were the #B117 variant. It grows with R~1.27
-while the ´old´ variant descends deceptively

🤔If that curve stops falling ~this week...🤨
#RIVM (#Netherlands´ disease center)
just released their official guesstimate:

"Last week, #B117 made up ~2 thirds (66%) of new cases in NL"

Falling case numbers are a result of
less people getting tested.
Positivity rate already stagnates.😳
rivm.nl/nieuws/nieuwe-… Image
Press conference in the #Netherlands:

"The third wave is inevitably upon us."

"If there was no #B117, more easing would be possible.
But the 'UK' variant is spreading at tremendous speed"

"With an R-value of almost 1.3, it doubles nearly every week"
The "doubling every week" isn't really what official #RIVM numbers suggested.
But anyway:
#Netherlands' primary schools will open, next week.
Because: "adults get infected by adults - and mostly not by children"...
Woooow - a gamechanger !!!

#COVID19 selftests will be made legal in #Germany, from tomorrow!
(okay, there are no certified devices for now)

That'd change my risk assessments for a lot of large-scale projects from "utterly stupid idea" to "doable"!
Right now,
a team of 26 military medics (6 doctors) from #Germany is on its way to #Portugal.

They also bring equipment (~40 ventilators, 150 perfusors etc) and will support a Lisbon hospital.

It's a long-term engagement:
Replacement comes after 3 weeks.
It's a long-term challenge for #Portugal...
Daily case numbers are about to peak - but the patients' influx to hospitals doesn't seem to stop.

Again, 3 intensive care patients will be transferred to #Madeira, tonight.

"ICUs on the continent are full".
The Amadora-Sintra hospital near Lisbon has asked CODU coordination center to stop sending them respiratory patients.

After a calm phase, suddenly a wave of new #COVID19 patients comes in.
They are overwhelmed at the moment...
(other treatment continues)
#Portugal´s #COVID19 pressure on hospitals is especially high in the #Lisbon region, now.

To immediately relieve pressure from Amadora-Sintra hospital, 20 (stabilized) patients are transferred to hospitals in #Porto, in the North.
Until now, it was officially no big deal in #Germany, if contacts of #COVID19 cases kept on working
-as long as they followed basic hygiene
-their job was essential for the state (critical infrastructure)

Now:"DO NOT apply to contacts of Variant cases"
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
For Healthcare Workers, #Germany´s new RKI rule would mean:
if they were contacts of a suspected #SARSCoV2 variant case, the former practise of putting them in "work quarantine" would now have to be ended.

good plan🤔...or, maybe...
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
Bayreuth hospital (#Bavaria) has first results of their mass screening:
Yes, their outbreak is actually caused by #B117.
(9 cases sequenced as such, more expected.)

Since they have no clue where it came from, they had all 3.300 staff in "work quarantine".
klinikum-bayreuth.de/aktuell/news/a… Image
According to #Germany´s new RKI rules, all 3.300 staff at Bayreuth´s hospital would have to be quarantined, with NO work - however important it might be...

🤨who in the world would ever really do this? China?

The video won´t play.
But that still picture tells the story.
#Australia #VIC #Melbourne #COVID19
here we go again...
facebook.com/7NEWSMelbourne… Image
"Earlier in the day, there was confirmed transmission of the ´UK´ variant #B117 between hotel quarantine guests."

“We Victorians know what to do, and we have proven, as state, very successful at managing these sorts of #outbreak.”
#Victoria´s Premier:

“This is one case. There’s no need for people to panic. There’s no need for people to be alarmed."

And, sorry: no return to work 🤷
#Melbourne #Outbreak #B117
The ´working assumption´ is that

"the viral load of the family was so high, the virus had travelled through the hotel just by the family opening the door..."

#Melbourne #Outbreak #B117
The working theory is:

"The man caught the virus while working in hotel quarantine,😷✔
despite not breaching virus control protocols."
While the #Melbourne outbreak has the entire state of Victoria stuck at "max. 50% should be back to the workplace",

other "business" goes on as usual.
(admittedly, it´d be ridiculous to have only 50% of workers, there)
Quite some contrast in reactions from other states to Melbourne´s #COVID19 outbreak:

NSW does it retro-style:
-temperature screening 🌡️
-and questionnaire 📃
(like in those times before we had rapid tests...)
Queensland doesn´t bother rapid tests either.
They stick to their
"Dramatic. Action. Immediately."

Anyone who had been to #Melbourne is asked to have a (PCR) test and isolate until results are in.
The problem with "Dramatic. Action. Immediately." is:

You get zero results.
Nothing happens.

And you can´t prove it´s because of your actions.
🤷 #Perth
#Perth will open up.
Gradually, for the most.

"The South-West will return to pre-lockdown conditions immediately, tomorrow"

😢(sigh... I'm stuck in the South-West, but wrong country)
#Sweden can decide:
Keep restrictions - numbers will continue to go down.

Ease a little - numbers will stay at a high level.

Have more contacts again - a 3rd wave, stronger than before. "And it could start relatively soon, maybe in a few weeks or so."
#Sweden´s calculations assume
-a variant similar to #B117,
-it was introduced in November
-it started with 150 cases, back then

Scenario 0:
Restrictions stay the same.

Restrictions would suppress even the variant - it would show "no effect".
Everything will be fine, soon... Image
#Sweden´s scenario 1:
Restrictions ease a little,
so contacts go back to the level of "cautiousness" they had before Christmas.

The variant rises slowly.
And the "old COVID" will fall slower.
Overall #COVID19 cases will not go down further.

A long, stressfull time for hospitals Image
#Sweden´s scenario 2:
Contacts rise to a "not so careful" level again.

The new variant rises faster (green)
And the "Old variant" goes up again, too (blue)
Another wave of #COVID19 infections. Image
#Sweden´s models do not take vaccinations into account.

"The model calculations go over the next 3 months.
Vaccinations are not expected to have any observable effect in this period".

Here´s the link to their entire presentation:
The model calculations above are optimistic.
They are for a "new variant" that has an increased transmission rate of just +30%.

Here´s #Sweden´s scenario 1 ("we want a bit more freedom and we promise we´ll be careful") again.
With a transmission rate of +50%
(like ~#B117): Image
#Denmark has also been doing some calculations, today.
They estimate,
their current measures result in good suppression of "traditional" #COVID19 variants.

But the "Contact-number" (Reproduction number R) for #B117 in Denmark is currently R~1.14
It grows.
ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede… Image
Austria's #Tyrol has a problem.

No one really knows how it got there.
(although there's gossip)

It's a large cluster of #B1351, the 'South Africa' variant.
The biggest problem seems to be: their denial to accept this is a real issue, beyond local clique.
A local virologist had tried to raise the alarm about #Tyrol's suspiciously emerging #B1351 cluster...
That was met with repulse from authorities.

So she took to the press.

Authorities settled down to "observe developments"😴

Swiss press is worried...
“J'ai l'impression que le Tyrol a évidemment conscience que la situation est grave"

Belgian press reports on #Austria's Health Minister's view that isolating the region wouldn't be necessary, as "they're aware of the situation".

I doubt Austria is aware.
Singapore's "Straits Times" is reporting on #Austria's inactivity regarding their Tyrolean #B1351 cluster...

Austria still doesn't seem to realize: the world is watching !
Pakistan ?!

Maybe not so relevant for local politicians in #Tyrol...

But they'd be really in the soup if press in neighboring Germany jumps on the story...

Germany's press had already reported that #Austria was "considering to isolate the #Tyrol cluster region".

But now,
Austria's decision to merely "observe the situation" is starting to make its way into german headlines as "Ischgl 2.0" approach
#Tyrol's special issue with Germany would be:

A new german ordinance on "Areas of Variant of Concern".

It prohibits transport of passengers from such areas to Germany / requires test and 10 day quarantine...

Even for daily commuters.

There are several experts in Austria, arguing against isolation of #Tyrol:
One says
"Tyrol´s not an island - you cannot isolate the spread" 🤦

Another one says "#B1351 is certainly prevalent in other areas as well. Just look at Cologne (#Germany)"👍
While Austria´s Tyrol has been sequencing for a while,
#Germany is just about to get things going.

While sequencing retrospect samples of #Cologne they found a surprise:

52 cases of ´South Africa´ variant #B1351
114 cases of ´UK´ variant #B117
#Germany's RKI has just tried to give an overview of "#Variants of Concern".

It came out as a pile of unconsolidated, inconsistent and utterly confusing data (at least it reads like that to me...)
The "timeline" in RKI's #Variant report isn't telling much.
The report says sample selection was heavily biased.

Other parts of the report say "data wasn't submitted in time", and evaluation methods were changed during the report period...
😕 Image
A (semi) useful map in the RKI #Variant report shows
how many cases of #B117 had been detected by labs, last week (up to Jan29).
It misses data ("not reported in time"),
but shows 2 hotspots:
-Flensburg (North, result of a big new year's eve party in Denmark)
-Hof (Czech border) Image
I have real doubt,
RKI´s #Variant report can be put to use at the moment.

A lot of data simply doesn´t match or is maybe outdated.
This is what #RKI says about #B117 cases
in the ENTIRE STATE of North Rhine-Westphalia (NW):

22 cases
from November 2020 until January 31/2021. Image
This is what one City alone (Cologne) reported for February 3:

137 cases of #B117.

(while RKI´s report says,
the entire state had 22 cases, 3 days earlier)
maybe let´s not use that RKI report to evaluate the current situation, okay?

(via @NihalDemir) Image
Someone in the #Netherlands had an idea:

😏What if we divide #school classes into ´subgroups´?
And then make these subgroups sit 1.5m apart...
So if one kid is infected, we only need this one subgroup to quarantine...!!😁

🙄#SARSCoV2 is a bowling ball🎳?
We need standards on dealing with #Variants
In Ludwigshafen (#Germany), one #B117 case popped up.
The "residence" of that case was immediately put under lockdown,
leading to "mental meltdown" of one of the inhabitants.

They all had been infected before...
Due to 1 "#Variant" case, #Ludwigshafen´s Mayor now asked for permission to install a movement restriction for all of the city´s ~170.000 inhabitants.

Allowed radius: 15 km.

(🙄me, thinking about #Tyrol...)
ludwigshafen.de/buergernah/bue… Image
I stumbled upon news, that Košice (#Slovakia) has an extraordinary high rate of #B117 cases.
Not much more info, except that schools would be kept closed.

I looked for more info on local websites...

😯Košice´s mayor urges everyone to stay indoors.
2 weeks ago, 60% of #COVID19 cases in Košice hospital were #B117 cases. Today, it´s ~90%

"This explains, why it hits even the young so hard"

Their data:
+70% more infectious
+36% more fatal
age group of severe patients decreases constantly

at the moment
"The situation has never been so serious"
A 5th round of mass testing is organized, in #Košice.

The local steel works have installed a livecam, so everyone can see the waiting queue for their site´s test facility...
Someone in Tyrol (#Austria) thinks "Movement restrictions -like the ones they use in #Germany" - would maybe be helpful to bring #SARSCov2 variants under control, there...
Ludwigshafen (#Germany) has just cancelled their 15km Movement restriction order.

"According to first test results, the one #SARSCoV2 variant case seems to have not spread further"
Cologne (#Germany) realizes: there might be trouble ahead...

237 new #COVID19 cases over night
(incidence rose from 75.9 to 91.3)
Reproduction factor is now R(t)~0.97

22 newly confirmed #B117 carriers, 3 with #B1351

(and it´s traditionally🥳time, soon)
Carnival isn´t the only fear of #Cologne (that´s why they implimented a "max. 1 visitor at home" rule, now.

They´re clearly afraid of #Variant spread:
"even where it´s legal to meet in groups (at work): think about reducing group size and getting tested"
stadt-koeln.de/politik-und-ve… Image
This is basically #aerosol.

Typical particle size: 0.1 - 10 µm
the same as a #SARSCoV2 virus , or a droplet carrying it.

Go ahead,
stop it with your plexiglass screens...
4 weeks ago,
the #Marseille fire department🚒 found an alarming rise in #SARSCoV2 markers during their routine sewage water screenings.
5 days later,
a #Cluster of 23 cases (including one of the first #B117 cases in #France) was found in the city...
After the #B117 cluster in January, #Marseille´s sewage water markers stayed on a plateau

but 3 days ago,
the Marseille fire department found an even higher surge in #SARSCoV2 markers.

There´s no sign of increase in tested cases/hospitalizations,
🤔News coming in:

There´s a #B117 outbreak in a nursing home in Northern #Germany.

14 residents have been detected as carriers of the ´UK´ variant.

The thing is:
they all had received their second shot of Biontech/Pfizers´ #vaccine, ~2 weeks ago.
landkreis-osnabrueck.de/presse/presses… Image
Interesting handling of the #B117 outbreak in Northern Germany:
the nursing home´s entire staff is quarantined,
including their families(!)

for the staff, it´s a "work #quarantine": they are allowed to leave the house to work at the nursing home.
(🤔and the rest of the family?) Image
Western #Norway had been following the #outbreak near Oslo relatively relaxed. It was far away...
This has changed.

"The infection situation overall is not dramatic..."
but it´s not under control.

Bergen region is under #Lockdown, now:
bergen.kommune.no/hvaskjer/tema/… Image
~a week ago,
#Bergen (Norway) registered first cases of #B1351.

Until today, no common source has been found.
One "hotspot" is a workplace and close to a tram station: possibly many contacts.
Unrelated clusters of #B117.

(Potentially dangerous situation)
helsedirektoratet.no/tema/beredskap… Image
Together with Bergen, the (relatively) small town of #Ulvik has been a cause for the #Lockdown.

Its 14-day incidence rate stands at
6.944, today.

But it didn´t start 14 days ago.
It all happened much faster...
vg.no/spesial/corona… Image
It was 10 days ago, that Ulvik´s first 2 cases were found.
Everyone was surprised:

it was in 2 returnees,
they had tested negative abroad
then tested negative in Norway
then quarantined for 10 days
and AFTER that
spread infections via kindergarten, school
#Norway´s Ulvik is a relatively small town.
They are shocked to have 96 cases of #B117,
this evening.

They have a clear view of how the infections spread:
It was the children at #school & kindergarten.
They infected their parents and grandparents.🚸⚠️
ulvik.kommune.no/aktuelt/kjare-… Image
In the #Netherlands, many primary schools will not go open, today

"We really do this for the safety of the teachers and the students,"
"It's a shame, because we hoped that schools would open. It's pure force majeure."

It´s because of snow☃️
Not #B117🧬
Hannover Region (#Germany) analyzed
74 recent #COVID19 samples:
32 of them were #B117
(2 were other variants, yet unclear).

(That´s also the region where indications had been found of a very early #B117 case in November 2020)
#Hannover Region, also interesting:
"We had one child carrying #B117 at a primary #school.
After testing all contacts, we only found
1 more child had been infected.
We believe it happened via out of school contact."

(no detailed circumstances)
hannover.de/Leben-in-der-R… Image
I see why #Norway is so worried about the #B1351 outbreak in Bergen:
the hotspot is a construction site
inside a partly operational student housing.
1.600 students live there,
and they all take the same tram, shop at the same supermarket,
as the workers
Bergen is now very clear:

"Close all large contruction sites in #Norway!"

If the government doesn´t act, Bergen will take regional measures and close all sites in their jurisdiction...)
Oh no🙄
Trondheim in Norway hasn´t "lost control".
They just don´t know how big the problem is, yet...

(Customers who had visited a hardware store in a 5 day period need to isolate immediately - with families.
That store was spreading #B117 infections...)
nrk.no/trondelag/ny-s… Image

"This is about limiting mobility,
calling it a ´travel warning´ is just wrong"

(#Austria has issued an official travel warning for their own state #Tyrol, as Tyrol continues a rather ´intransparent´ handling of unknown numbers of #B1351 cases)
tirol.gv.at/presse/pressem… Image
Wording😵 - read carefully🙄

#Austria´s military will be deployed to #Tyrol for border controls...
of people who want to enter INTO Tyrol
from ABROAD (Germany, Switzerland, etc.)

and some contact tracing.

What did you think? Calm down...😏
Here we go again...
A court rules "due to the successfully lowered incidence rates, current measures are disproportionate and must be lifted"

We won´t see donut days any soon.
This is what #B117 does.
This is "disproportionate".
It just waits until you feel like📉🥳

You start to dance - it will hit you like a hammer
(incidence <35 to >130+ in just a few days)
lra-hok.maps.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashbo… Image
A workplace outbreak is driving the rapid re-surge of #COVID19 in Hohenlohe (#Germany).
43 infected at work (#B117)
19 of 74 contacts already ´positive´.

Authorities scramble and quarantine secondary contacts (family members of mere contacts) as well! ...
hohenlohekreis.de/index.php?id=2… Image
Adding to Hohenlohe´s
"highly dynamic and worrying" #COVID19 trend:
a #kindergarten outbreak, where
"children infected parents and other children"

(They´re no "drivers of the pandemic" or "riders of the apocalypse" - they´re just people who infect others)
swr.de/swraktuell/bad… Image
A warning from Hohenlohe (#Germany):

2 weeks ago,
our district was the one with the lowest incidence in our entire state.

The sudden outbreaks have now turned us into the one with the highest incidence, within a matter of days.😞

Stick to the measures!
oehringen.de/buerger/corona… Image
📢Stick to the measures!

The interest in #Ireland´s fight against #COVID19 has somehow faded (according to view numbers of NPHET briefings).

Numbers may seem to be frustratingly stagnant, now.
👉But that´s the good news !👈

If people just hang in...
When FINDING more cases is a good sign:

#Ireland had to stop tracing close contacts during the brutal peak of infections.
It has resumed. It starts to find more cases, now.
Even the asymptomatic ones.

That´s why case numbers seem ´stagnant´ at the moment
An indicator that your contact tracing actually works:

The proportion of discovered ´asymptomatic´ cases
in young age groups
should be ~20%

(😳did we ever keep track of this, here?)
When it has started, the curves look the same.
Everywhere around the world.

#B117 in #Norway.
(week 5 not complete, yet)
fhi.no/sv/smittsomme-… Image
Suprise🙄in #Austria:

#Tyrol doesn´t have 8 active cases of #B1351.
It´s "120 active cases, at the moment", at least.

(that´s not what they told us, yesterday...)
Surprise😕for #Tyrol:

#Austria´s army will soon start with checks at the state borders of Tyrol (north),
controlling everyone who wants to LEAVE.

Negative #COVID19 tests will be mandatory.

(That´s not what they were told, yesterday...😏)
#Austria´s railway announce that a negative test would be required,
even for a mere transit through #Tyrol.
"Customers who had been to the supermarket since February 1st are advised to OBSERVE THEIR HEALTH
and IN CASE OF SYMPTOMS get a #COVID19 test done..."

We won´t make it to zero, any time soon.

Germany, #Osnabrück district. #B117.
landkreis-osnabrueck.de/presse/presses… Image
"A contractor had informed the supermarket that he had been tested "positive".
THEN LATER, DURING A MEETING at the supermarket he probably infected 3 employees..."

(that´s what the text says🤷
and there´s only this one text version circulating)
#SARSCoV2 and the mystical mist.

#Melbourne Health Authority now suspects
the reason why people who were just passing through a hotel corridor got infected, was

an infected person had used a "nebuliser"
(inhaling medics, exhaling viral loaded aerosol...)

Oh. Okay.
"The infection risk from a person #vaping is well
BELOW that from the same person SPEAKING.
Speaking only for 6 minutes per hour already yields a higher infection risk than high intensity vaping"

medrxiv.org/content/10.110… Image
The more transmissions,
the more chance for transmission failure (aka #Variants).

Some of them may be less fortunate.
Some of them will become famous as
"Variant of Concern".

The one from #Bristol seems to be an aspiring one,
featuring #E484K
Denmark is surprised:
"Looks like we managed to have control of #B117"

The calculated reproduction factor is R(t)~0,99
meaning: this variant doesn´t grow!

It might be due to their strict counter measures.
And to their tracing, focussing on B117 contacts!
ssi.dk/-/media/cdn/fi… Image
"We need to keep our current measures. This monday, we have opened up our elementary schools again.

That effect will only be seen in a few weeks.

It seems, #B117 might rise to R~1,15 next week, and maybe only go up from then..."
A nebuliser seems to be incredibly effective in spreading #SARSCoV2.

But I somehow doubt it happens via "exhaled left-over aerosol with the virus attached to it"...
UK´s NERVTAG had evaluated the risk of nebulisers spreading #SARSCoV2, 3 weeks ago.

The inhaled aerosol would turn into droplets, once hitting lung tissue. Staying there.

(My guess for the Melbourne case is: contaminated ´unhygienic´ #nebuliser tank😣)
gov.uk/government/pub… Image
Whatever the #nebuliser in Melbourne´s quarantine hotel was spreading:

it seems to have been incredibly contagious...
Interesting points in this interview:

-N95 were not required for all personnel
-One was wearing an N95 but got infected
The issue: wearing one isn´t enough.
It needs to be worn correctly.
#Melbourne #Nebuliser #Aerosol #COVDI19
That seems to be another issue:
making people alert enough,
so that they think about maybe being infected,
even when they are off-duty and feel (mild) symptoms.

And not wander around the city for 3 days,
before finally a test says
#COVID19 "positive"🤦
#France is confident enough to not sharpen their #COVID19 restrictions, at the moment.
Overall, test numbers have increased a bit
and positivity rate has decreased a bit.

Seems that everything is going fine...
for now.
Something is going on in Dunkerque,
in the North of #France:

Their positivity rate has gone up a lot,
the proportion of #B117 is 6 times as high
as the average of entire France.

Their hospitals are saturated and started transfers again...
Something´s going on in Marseille,
in the South of #France:

"case numbers start to go up.
(as sewage #COVID19 traces predicted)
ICUs are saturated, but what´s new and alerting: it´s more and more younger patients admitted there..."
Oddly enough,
data from #Marseille says
"number of new #COVID19 cases has been rising slowly"
(from ~60 to ~130 cases per day)🔵

"there was a swift peak of #COVID19 markers in sewage water, but it´s receding, now"🟠
mediterranee-infection.com/wp-content/upl… Image
Nothing much happens in Düsseldorf (#Germany):

They started to analyze their current #COVID19 cases and found:
"19.5% are already #B117

At the same time, their 7-day-incidence is pretty low (45,7 today)...
Düsseldorf´s case numbers are constantly going down, depite a current "proportion of 19.5% #B117".

They say that proportion makes for 34 cases (in the last 10 days).
(🤔If those 34 and their contacts are under control, even #B117 should be manageable👊)
corona.duesseldorf.de/zielgruppen/al… Image
Trondheim (#Norway) learnt from Australia:
after discovering #B117 infected persons had been out in the city, they issued a warning & a list of all visited venues.

Everyone who had been there (at the certain time) was urged to get tested

trondheim.kommune.no/aktuelt/korona… Image
#Trondheim was trying hard.
But they discovered soon, their contact tracing couldn´t keep up (´was blasted´🙄as autotranslate says)...

Neighboring communities have now declared Trondheim to be
"Uncontrolled Infection Area"
and urge to not travel there...
nrk.no/trondelag/fryk… Image
When Trondheim´s contact tracing was still ´intact´, they thought that one case of #B117 at a school would be manageable😌

But today they found another case,
"with many contacts at this school"
All 1.500 students, staff & families are quarantined, now.
#Germany just declared Austria´s #Tyrol (and Czechia) to be
"Areas of Uncontrolled Infection" (as Norway would say)

(it´s not the german "Virusvariant-Area" definition, that would cut off those regions completely.
Seems it´s just about heavy controls)
Many commuters from Czechia are working in #Bavaria.
"there´s a large number of outbreaks at workplaces, now".

They already had free/mandatory testing installed.

Now there´s a new rule:
"workers from Czechia must not leave their workplace" (no shopping)
landkreis-hof.de/neue-regelunge… Image
"Variants already make up 40%-70% of all new #COVID19 cases in the Bavaria/Czechia border region"
There´s something going on in #France.

"today, already ~20% to 25% of new #COVID19 cases is the #B117 variant"

(but that´s not all)...
in #France´s department "Moselle",
there are ~300 cases of ´Brazil´& ´South Africa´ variants...

"The situation is worrying.
I will go there tomorrow and see what the problem is."

(there´s some notion that the infections might have come from... Germany🙄)
At first glance, there´s not much difference between Moselle (France) and other departements.

It´s just that others have a falling incidence and Moselle slowly rises.
But if you know that rise is made up of #B1351 etc...

That´s really worrying.
grand-est.ars.sante.fr/system/files/2… Image
#France´s departement Moselle has already reacted:

Every school, where one (1) case of a new #variant (´South Africa´ or ´Brazil´) pops up,
will be closed.

~8 closed, so far (number rising)
The mayor of Metz (Moselle, #France) is in favour of a regional #Lockdown

"but it has to be short and hard. And it needs to take care of schools."
(He sees ´exploding case numbers among 10-20 year olds´)

"They need to stay at home".
francebleu.fr/infos/sante-sc… Image
Good morning, Melbourne,
good morning world!!!

"Anyone who attended

Terminal 4 at
#Melbourne Airport

between 4.45am and 1.15pm on February 9 is being told to get tested and isolate immediately for 14 days."
#Ireland's case decline has started to slow down!

(it used to be 6-9 percent per day.
Now 4-6%)
Authorities have a very detailed picture of #COVID19 spread in #France's Moselle.

It will be interesting to find a common pattern in this very localized prevalence.

Also one thing is noticable:
It's mostly in the age group 10-19 years.
Authorities in #Melbourne should have an even more detailed picture of where #COVID19 cases currently are.

Their response, after seeing the recent trail of infections:
#Victoria #B117
I see why they hurry & worry:

"the time between exposure, incubation, symptoms and testing positive is rapidly shortening.
So much so, that even secondary close contacts are potentially infectious within that 48-hour window"
premier.vic.gov.au/statement-prem… Image
Most of Europe may think this might be a bit too much of a panic...😂👇
but on the other hand:

what happens if you attach wings and jet thrust to a "hyper-speed" virus?
(how did it get there, after all?☝️🙄)
#Victoria #B117
So #Germany has in fact declared
-Czech Republic
-and also Slovakia

"Areas of Variant of Concern"

That should trigger a new "COVID Protection Ordinance",
prohibiting persons to travel from those regions into Germany...
(no test can change that)
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
As it was announced during #France´s Health Minister´s visit

"the departement of #Moselle counts
~100 new ´South Africa´ variant cases, every day😯
Mostly in the North / West
It´s not only clusters, or travel related.
It seems to be community spread..."
This morning,
several mayors had urged to close the #schools in #France´s departement of #Moselle, as they saw the #B1351 variant was mainly spreading there...
Thionville´s mayor:
"~A hard #lockdown would need to close the borders as well and cut 150.000 people off from work.
Weekend #curfews would have heavy psychological impact on everyone.

The main issue is the #schools, where many are infected, these days."
Mayor of Metz (#Moselle):
"~Our local incidence is going above 400.
We´re seeing an explosion of #variant cases, especially in age group 10-20 years.

We need to stop this!
I´d like to start #school holidays one week early.
That means: today."
Despite all good proposals #France´s Health Minister left #Moselle, saying:
there should be more tests
and vaccination should be enforced.

The other things (closing schools, lockdown,...) would need to be discussed later.
😠many in Moselle aren´t happy
Even #Moselle´s neighbors in #Germany are irritated:

"Why more testing?🙄Moselle already does twice as much testing and more vaccinating than we do here!"

They are afraid someone will have the idea to close the border between both regions...
also #France, today:

"This is, to our knowledge, the first description of #reinfection with the ´South African´ #B1351 variant, causing severe #COVID19,
four months after a first mild infection."
watermark.silverchair.com/ciab129.pdf?to… Image
Kehl (#Germany) is preparing to offer free rapid (antigen) tests for residents and commuters to/from Strasbourg (their neighboring city in #France).

This is in anticipation of schools opening (Feb22) & maybe some new transit requirements...
For commuters from Czechia, Tyrol (& Slovakia) there will be no way to get to Germany, for a while.
Not even for going to work!

Germany just confirmed they will apply the full "COVID Protection Ordinance", due to widespread virus variants in those regions
Germany's railways are stopping to serve Tyrol, Czechia, ...
(also transit to italy, via Tyrol)
The #COVID19-hunting fire department of Marseille (#France) now has a chart,
showing the proportion of variants in wastewater samples
(´UK´ ~the same as ´Brazil´+´South Africa´)

and maps that show where they found which variant in samples
For the first time since last summer,
#UK´s reproduction number has fallen below R(t)~1,
in every region.

That´s WITH #B117 as a dominant variant!

They are under national #Lockdown.
Schools are closed.
news.sky.com/story/covid-19… Image
#Portugal´s reproduction number has fallen down to R(t)~0.71

Not only is this the lowest number since the start of the pandemic,
they claim
"this is the lowest R in whole Europe !"
#Portugal´s Prime Minister:

"The current confinement works!
We have to maintain the current level of confinement, certainly for the next 2 weeks
and we must realistically assume that we will have to keep it even during the month of March"
(schools closed)
Portugal´s R(t) seems to crash down,
right after they closed schools...
(which was the very last measure that was left, as everything else didn´t seem to work)

(Note: it takes ~2-3 weeks before measures show effects. Earlier measures may well have worked)
😧er, that wasn´t in the news, yet - was it?

According to biogroup (doing ~25% of all #COVID19 tests in #France),
the hotspot of ´Brazil´&´South Africa´ #Variants isn´t Moselle...
the share of these variants in #Vosges departement is 31.3%
#B1351 #P1?
biogroup.fr/actualites/don… Image
What´s the special😵factor with Vosges departement?
While Moselle is kind of nice (I like it), it´s a lot of industry there.

Vosges on the other hand has mountains, snow, and...
as holidays have started in parts of France, already - TOURISTS (booked out)!
Norge🇳🇴...har du det bra??

#COVID19 case numbers in Norway have stopped going down and suddenly jumped up (+154 cases more than the same day last week).

(Norway´s Health Minister yesterday:
"infections are under control.
Have nice holidays,
be careful")
#Norway´s National Health Institute #FHI right now, be like:
Norway´s National Health Institute:
Hei alle sammen!

There was some technical issue.
Some case reports got clogged in the system. And when we fixed it, they all came out at once.
There was no spike in #COVID19 case numbers.
Trend is still slowly downwards
Meanwhile, there´s🔥in Moselle (#France):
The Mayor of Metz is upset. It was confirmed again, that "no new meaures" would be taken against #B1351 & #P1 variants in #Moselle.

"This is like denying reinforcements to fire crews,
battling the blaze"
Prefect of #Moselle departement:
"We don´t want to restrict movements - the region is dependant on free travel to neighboring countries"

"We won´t close schools, as this would be too excessive, in view of the small number of cases"
Finally, there´s also some good news for #Moselle:

Crews from the #COVID19-hunting fire department of #Marseille will come all the way up to the north of #France, to support Moselle with their wastewater virus tracing !

They arrive tomorrow🚒
Start work on monday🪣🧬🧑‍🔬 Image
in Dunkerque (#France):

"The situation has worsened brutally <-(sic!)
Our incidence is now at 515,
as opposed to 384, a week ago,

while the circulation of ´UK´ variant #B117 is gaining speed."
nord.gouv.fr/Actualites/Act… Image
#Dunkerque has now "42% more patients in hospitals than 2 weeks ago".

As #B117 is taking its toll,
the mayor had asked to close schools...
it will not happen.

"sanitary measures" instead.
All of a sudden,
#NewZealand found a #COVID19 ´positive´ family in their community.

-a highschool teenager
-a onstruction worker
-a catering worker

There´s no hint to where they may have got infected, so far...
NZ´s list of "exposure sites" is long.
It´s interesting to see how NZ stacks test priorities, to avoid jammed test facilities:

Risk of exposure (casual outdoors or "casual plus" in indoor settings)
Time since exposure (earliest test 5 days after exposure)
health.govt.nz/our-work/disea… Image
It´s also interesting to see, how #NewZealand just flips open their handbook and assigns
"You´re #Level2 Area - and you over there, you´re #Level3, sorry. It´s just for 3 days."

(while I´m having another mental breakdown over local updates in Germany😭)
I mean:
WHY ON EARTH did someone think this would be necessary:

"personnel at medical facilities will no longer be required to wear FFP2 masks as long as they don´t have direct contact with patients"

(🤔I can´t see the aerosol. So it can´t see me)
…zialministerium.baden-wuerttemberg.de/de/gesundheit-… Image
Roadblocks around Auckland.

Of course, this will only work as long as you can say
"it´s only for 3 days - we think we´ll have it under control, then"

BTW: anyone knows how #Moselle (France) is doing with their #B1351 etc. outbreaks?
Is the virus starting to fool tests ?
Tests of the latest #B117 cases in #Melbourne gave "inconclusive" results.

One of them had "immediately transmitted" the virus,
despite having been tested
⚠️´negative´ before and AFTER the contact !⚠️

9news.com.au/national/coron… Image
The "source case" testing ´negative´ before and AFTER transmitting,

+ one contact having 3 different results in one day...

🤔Those tests (procedures) appear to be pretty useless for that type of virus (which is supposed to be ´ordinary´ #B117)
9news.com.au/national/coron… Image
#Melbourne should aim for good testing (procedures)...

They now have
"hundreds or thousands of contacts"
who have been to a popular market hall.

They are all required to get tested and isolate at home for 14 days.
View of a hospital director from #Moselle:

"Hospitals/ICU are full. But only 50% are #COVID19"
"COVID Emergency calls start to increase, but not as bad as last year"
"We need to come out of this dictate, where public health commands over everything else"
I think,
the doctor´s view would be shared by many, when he says:

the priority should be
"detection, treatment and isolation"

The thing is:
many can´t see that #detection and #isolation would be working in #Moselle, at the moment.
today24.news/en/2021/02/str… Image
The "detection" capacity of #Moselle will soon receive a boost.
A convoy of #Marseille´s fire department started its 800 km route, this morning.
Their duty will be to develop a map of the different #SARSCoV2 variants´ spread, by analyzing wastewater.
The situation in #Portugal is looking better each day.

Hospital admisssions peaked ~2 weeks ago,
ICU peaked ~1 week ago (still remains very high).

Treatment is still mostly concentrated on #COVID19 patients...
arcgis.com/apps/opsdashbo… Image
The director of #Portugal´s largest hospital has one goal:
reducing #COVID19 patient numbers, so treatment of "normal" patients can resume.

He warns: "the virus is still there!
If we reopen hastily, it will all go up, just as fast as before."
(article from last week):
"The closing of the schools was decisive for the abrupt drop in Portugal´s case numbers."

"Looking at age group incidences, I have no doubt that the closure of schools was decisive and we acted too late."
"~Last March, #Portugal´s case numbers were only 400 a day, so school closures showed no big effect.

Now we had 14.000 cases a day and infections in schools, (some spreading to families) - this is why school closures had such an impact."
A note from the town of Ulvik in #Norway:

"The Mayor is optimistic, and believes that we are now seeing an end of the outbreak, thanks to great joint efforts in our small village!"

Only 4 new cases, that day.
The town of 1.067 inhabitants has 130 cases.
ulvik.kommune.no/kontaktinforma… Image
What happened in #Norway´s remote town of Ulvik,
that got 12% of the population infected with #B117,
sent hundreds (half the town) into quarantine
and 6 into hospital?

"We believe it was the kids"

Ulvik´s #B117 outbreak came from abroad, with a family.

They followed the rules, took 2 tests, quarantined for 10 days.
After quarantine was over, their son went to Ulvik school.
Just for one day...
Later that day, the parents felt #COVID19 symptoms.
#NewZealand and one #B117 infected kid:

"During the infectious period she was at #school for a very short period of time...

we are essentially talking about one or two days"

(will this become a story like Ulvik in Norway?)😞
#Dunkerque region Mayors (F):

"In our area, the ´UK´ variant #B117 is already making up 80% of #COVID19 cases."

"We´re not allowed to close schools,
but we close class after class, when infections occur.
So schools may finally close down all together"
francetvinfo.fr/sante/maladie/… Image
Here´s the #COVID19 incidence rate of #Dunkerque region (and surrounding departements "Nord" & "Pas-de-Calais").

The entire area sees a rising trend (which is contrary to most of #France)
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
Something to think about:
While Dunkerque´s incidence is currently ~230ish,

here´s the incidence for Moselle (purple ~290)

and Alpes-Maritime in the South of #France (blue, ~500) - they wonder why everyone freaks out about the numbers in the North and no-one talks about them... Image
Here´s more tricky data from #France:
The rate of positive tests.

Which one should we worry about?
Alpes-Maritimes (blue) has ~33% #B117
Nord (Dunkerque, green) has ~80% #B117
Moselle (purple) has many #B1351 cases, goes wild on testing, so positivity rate goes down
🤔 Image

seeing incidences fall,
test positive rates fall,
even in those areas with a high share of #Variant cases,
the world swinging into "Yeah, let´s reopen!" mood,
I´m nearly falling to it myself...

Just swiftly checking the internet for #COVID19 reports

nooooooooooo !
Y´all remember the case of the Quarantine Hotel staff in #Melbourne,
who received regular #COVID19 tests.

She tested "negative" before she went into a restaurant, "immediately" infected several people,
and was tested "negative" again, the next day...
One of the (false "negative" case´s) contacts at the #Melbourne restaurant was tested over and over for 2-3 days.

She returned 4 different results,
a "maybe" weak positive.

It was decided to be "positive", today.
(hundreds of contacts need to quarantine)
Now, Bergen (#Norway) sends a warning:

"We´re seeing it over and over again:
Contacts test ´negative´.
Then in quarantine they develop symptoms.
And even later they´re finally tested ´positive´.
This seems to be a feature of the new #variants"
🙄👉🔘 🚨
nrk.no/vestland/berge… Image
Now, #Austria´s Tyrol comes along, saying

"well, we found around 505 ´South Africa´ variant (#B1351) cases, so far.
~142 seem to be active right now.


tirol.gv.at/gesundheit-vor… Image
Will I have mutant nightmares?
Nah - everything will be fine soon.
We´ll go out and have fun and everything else, again

"Hi, I´m negative"...
France has modified the #COVID19 outbreak protocol for schools.

If it´s a #B117 variant,
only close contacts need to quarantine.

If it´s a #B1351 or #P1 case, the whole class will need to quarantine immediately.

🤔wait... how do they know the variant?🙄
education.gouv.fr/covid19-ouvert… Image
Parents in #Moselle refuse to send their kids to school.

The #COVID19-hunters from Marseille fire department have begun their work in #Moselle.
They seem to be constantly surrounded by reporters.

🪣🧬🧑‍🔬 📸📹

(not so famous: the canal workers who actually wade through that stuff every day🙄)
Yesterday, first wastewater samples were taken from 8 large sewage treatment plants, schools and nursing homes in #Moselle.

A plane transferred them to Marseille where they are analysed for #COVID19 variants.
First results will be announced today.

Mayor of Dunkerque (#France) just exploded.

"~this 'UK' #variant is highly contagious. It is going to saturate our hospitals in no time.
We had measures, but government brought their own, keeping schools open.

We need IMMEDIATE action."
Now Alpes-Maritimes makes itself heard:

"I resort to draw your attention to the fact that I already had the honour to formally urge Monsieur Ministre in 2 earlier letters...😠"

that this departement is the REALLY worst hit in France and needs vaccines.
Health Minister of #France just announced:

"The situation in #Moselle remained under control.
No further measures are needed.
It´s difficult to say why the variant hit this small landstrip."
(that´s too reassuring the neighbors that it is ´confined´)
A press conference of #Moselle´s regional authorities wasn´t so optimistic, earlier today:

"360 of 4.000 classes are closed, due to at least one case of #B1351 (in class or family)".

"Half of analyzed #COVID19 cases are now variants.
35% are #B1351."
Information from today´s press conference in #Moselle (France):

First results of the watewater samples (taken by specialised crew from Marseille fire department) are in.
All samples fom nursing homes show no sign of #COVID19, there.

Here´s how they work:
There was also some disappointment:
#Moselle will not publish other wastewater test results, for now.
"It would say nothing. This is the first shot. It´s only after we´ve taken a 2nd sample that we can see a trend."

These results may come next weekend.
Germany´s #RKI has just changed their #quarantine guidelines:

"#Variants are becoming common, so stricter variant-quarantine rules shall now be applied to all cases
(14 days, no shortening by tests).

"secondary contacts don´t need to be quarantined"
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
In a few hours,
#Melbourne shall "largely return to its previous rules".

Not to the eased ones, that would have come into force the very day, when it was discovered that #B117 had escaped quarantine.

And there'll be masks.
Because you never know.😷
All of #Victoria's lockdowns had happened, because city hotels are not really made to serve as quarantine facilities.

At last,
that is looked into.

A quarantine camp in Australia's Nortern Territory will serve as a model.
For #NewZealand, it's not over, yet.

The #B117-infected teenager, who had been to school for 1-2 days...
of course, the virus infected someone in her class,
who then infected someone in her family...

They had already been in quarantine.
But new contacts.
Dordogne (in south-west #France) is such a remote area, that even tweets need a day to get known to the world...

So how on earth did 'South Africa'/'Brazil' #COVID19 variants manage to get there???

160 cases.
"no community spread", so far...
Things go a bit more relaxed, in #France´s Dordogne.

60 tests have been done on monday. ~10 are #COVID19 ´positive´.

They are now sequenced in Paris & Lyon.
Being such a remote location, some think it may well be "a local #Variant"...
The 60 tests on monday in Dordogne were no "community test campaign".

These tests were meant for visitors (contacts) of some nursing homes, where the suspicious variant is circulating.

The official note is
"A massive community spread is not observed".
Actually, the outbreak of the "suspicious variant" in Dordogne (F) might have been going on for quite a while.

They talk about a deadly outbreak in a nursing home in Nontron, starting ~22 January.
And authorities still don't know where the "mistery #variant cases" of #Dordogne came from.

(but for sure, they claim: "it is contained")
#Germany is a bit agitated, since the Health Minister stated that "meanwhile, #B117 is found to be over 20% of #COVID19 cases"...

Denmark: "hold my test tube...!"
Yesterday, #Denmark published sequencing results.

They found #B117 was ~30% of sequenced samples in week 5 (~2 weeks ago, early February)
files.ssi.dk/covid19/virusv… Image
And #Denmark also found,
that current measures seem to lose power to contain infections...

R(t) for #B117 is now ~1.2 (!!)
covid19.ssi.dk/-/media/cdn/fi… Image
#Denmark's numbers were decreasing a lot.

One proposal was made in parliament:
"We would like to open Denmark a little bit more as spring is back"

All kids back to school.
(part time, tests),
small shops open
(when case numbers stay low)

😐We'll see...
(updated, while I had a coffee break🍰☕️)

😕#Denmark now says, last week´s share of #B117 was already 45%...
files.ssi.dk/covid19/virusv… Image
Denmark´s Health Minister:

"Our current reproduction number is currently R(t)~0.9

that´s not bad, considering we opened primary schools on February 8 and the fact that B117 is already at 45%"
How does it look like, if #B117 finally gets to 80%?

That just hapened in Dunkerque (#France)
their incidence jumped over 650

"If you look at Dunkerque and the surrounding towns, it seems #B117 is establishing really fast"
🤔These results are from 7 #B117 patients, only.

"symptoms of infections with the new variants start very late in quarantine"
(Norway, Victoria)
"People left quarantine and THEN started to infect others"
(Singapore, Japan,...)
is really a thing.
The mean duration of infection with ´ordinary´ #COVID19 used to be ~8.2 days (max. 9.7 days)

If a person catches the #B117 variant virus, the usual infection duration seems to be ~13.3. days (at least 10.1 days, max. 16.5 days)...
dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/hand… Image
A map of local #SARSCoV2 variants

(according to #Germany)
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
A map of local #SARSCoV2 variants

(according to #Norway)
fhi.no/contentassets/… Image
A mapf of the local #SARSCoV2 variant

(according to France´s Health Minister,
all new cases in #Moselle should be regarded as being #B1351 (or a ´Brazil´ variant)
For perspective:

The test rate of #Moselle (France is throwing all their spare tests in there).
And Alpes-Maritimes.

(note: on this scale,
Germany would have ~250 tests per 100.000 inhabitants per day)
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
Interesting effect:
(positive rate, 🇩🇪 has ~6.5%)

While the mass testing in #Moselle seems to find many "negatives"🤔,

the ~constant testing in Alpes-Maritimes suddenly goes📈😱(#B117 was present with 30%, 5 days ago. Yesterday this was said to be 50%)
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
"There´s no case explosion in #Moselle",
the prefect said.

(unfortunately, there´s no insight in who´s getting tested, as well...)
In #Czechia, things are consistent (in getting a bit worse every day): R(t)~1.1

But tomorrow, there´ll be talks about opening shops.
And school might start again in March (with some testing).

(🧐needs to be watched...)
A research institution in #Germany "wants to find out, if analyzing wastewater may give hints to #COVID19 in the area."
"Early results of the first pilot are expected soon".

(😴they started ~3 waves ago and are still stuck with "research"???)😣😳😢
The COVID-hunters of #Marseille fire department have just published new maps of how infections with #SARSCoV2 variants are distributed in their city.

(Derived from sophisticated wastewater sample analysis...)
The new "trendy" variant #B1525 (a mix of ´UK´ and ´South Africa´ variant) has been discovered in 22 samples in #Norway.

All from the Jan 21 - Feb 8 period,
most from Oslo region.

"As this variant shows up in tests as simple B117, it may be overlooked!"
Due to recent findings
(variants can cause infections to persist longer),
#France will adapt its isolation period from 7 days to 10 days.

(for ALL infected persons, REGARDLESS of the actual variant).

"for contacts, it stays at 7 days quarantine"
#Finland has found a brand new variant (#FIN796H).

-this one may cause "N-gene target failures", so may not be detected by some PCR tests
-may be more infectious
-may escape immune response

+no reason to panic😎
(just a cause of concern)

vita.fi/uutiset/suomes… Image
New cases in #Melbourne.
Already in isolation, so no big worries

They are believed to have been infected by the "Nebuliser" event on Feb 3/4.
They still tested ´negative´ on Feb 10.

(7 day quarantine period might really be too short for new variants)
Seems #B117 is getting ready for a great tour of #Germany...

2 kindergartens, 10 infected staff and 10 infected kids. 100 contacts (one week ago).

That turned into:
67 sequenced so far - 45 of them carry #B117

"The kids swiftly infect their families"
swr.de/swraktuell/rhe… Image
#B117 at work here as well?
#Germersheim sees a rapid uptick in their 7 day incidence rate.
Was pretty low before,
yesterday: 93.8
today: 106.2
(kindergartens involved...)

Oh: in 3 days, many german schools shall reopen.
experience.arcgis.com/experience/478… ImageImage
Kindergarten, other part of #Germany:

"A new dynamic in infections"
"Many of those kids are really sick"

Note: the kindergartens are open for kids of ESSENTIAL workers. Having those workers infected by their kids is maybe not what we´d want...
A swift google search for outbreaks at kindergartens in #Germany. (Timeframe: last 24 hours)

Just go ahead.
Check it:
google.com/search?biw=160… Image
A hospital in #Norway, near Oslo just started to sequence all #COVID19 cases they found.

Surprising result:
~80% are already #B117.

sykehuset-ostfold.no/nyheter/na-ana… Image
I was kind of wondering, why #Oslo had such a sudden surge of cases in the last ~5 days...

With 80% #B117, that´s no wonder anymore
vg.no/spesial/corona… Image
Outbreaks in #Oslo's West (!)

"As it is mainly in children and young people, we suspect it's a variant"

"It looks like those cases are connected"

(4 districts concerned,
300 close contacts)
Current #outbreaks in Oslo's West (#Norway):

"Children and adolescents had been sent to activities with mild, cold-like symptoms.

Parents need to pay more attention to this..."

Interesting difference:

While one hospital NEAR Oslo today said they found 80% of their #COVID19 cases were #B117,
(they´re located in a hotspot)

it´s different in the city of #Oslo itself:
10-15% of samples are a Variant (says Norway´s Health Institute)
Meanwhile in #Moselle the second wastewater testing showed: the situation hasn´t changed.
The tracers for #B1351 variant still remain much higher than anywhere else in France.

Moselle firefighters have been trained, now.
They´ll take over sampling, soon.
One thing speaks against being content with that "stable condition" in #Moselle:

Intensive care units are 95% occupied.
And the age average of the occupants is strangely low:
55 years (10 years younger than it would normally be in France)...
republicain-lorrain.fr/faits-divers-j… Image
Remarkable in #Moselle:

while the watewater tests showed
"spread of #B1351 stayed the same, this week"

the number of admissions to intensive care suddenly spiked in the last ~4 days.

(That certainly shouldn´t keeep going on like this)...
covidtracker.fr/dashboard-depa… Image
In Kolding (#Denmark) the reopening of primary schools (Feb8) didn´t go well.
Several clusters of #B117 around schools and kindergartens developped in the last few days.

Thes situation got so bad, that all schools & kindergartens are now shut down.
As "something strange is going on" with kids in #Kolding🇩🇰,
with violent outbreaks at schools and kindergartens,
the city now offers #COVID19 tests for kids.

They recommend taking a test with kids as young as 1 year.
#Denmark is closing many crossings to #Germany, tonight.
Reason: #B117 cases in the german border city #Flensburg don´t seem to be suppressed.

It started ~2 months ago (after Germans met for new year´s parties in Denmark) but it is self-sustained, now
Case numbers have been increasing relentlessly.
"Meanwhile, EVERY NEW CASE is a #B117 variant"...
So, #Flensburg installs drastic measures:
- a nightcurfew &
- prohibiting contacts outside one´s household
for a week
(can be extended...)
flensburg.de/PDF/Schreiben_… Image
#Denmark's police confirmed:
"Infections' pressure from #Flensburg caused new border measures"

Only a handful border crossings remain open, strictly controlled.

Entry allowance would need:
-a "worthy" cause
-a 'negative' #COVID19 test
#Denmark´s initial border controls were aimed at keeping #B1351 out of the country.

The Kolding outbreak showed that #B117 can have a heavy impact as well.

And in some regions it is exploding...
(Syddanmark: there´s Kolding. And the border to Flensburg)
files.ssi.dk/covid19/virusv… Image
And in Aabenraa community (🇩🇰),
just over the border from Flensburg (🇩🇪),

registered #COVID19 cases suddenly went up to "bad as in December" levels, since ~7 days.

(so closing the border a bit more may seem to be an easy way to control the spread)
experience.arcgis.com/experience/aa4… Image
Different approach at the Saarland (🇩🇪) - Moselle (🇫🇷) border:
Both border regions reached an aggreement.

They´ll install a joint test centre.
And provide enough free rapid tests for firms in the region to test their commuting workers every 2 days.
At the border between Bavaria🇩🇪 and Czechia🇨🇿, the "rapid testing at the workplace, with free antigen tests" approach is already in place ( since ~2 weeks).

(just so you know:
they realized incidence doesn´t go down,
"because now we find more cases")🙂
"The tendency in the last 3 days isn't good - not good anymore..."

Health Minister of #France confirms that the trend of decreasing case numbers seems to slow down.

But he still wants to wait for 8-10 days to adapt the current measures (or not)...
Lindesnes in #Norway hits the emergency-stop:

"Stay at home! Stay in your family!
We are in an unclear situation and infections keep spreading."

It all started at the local café...
(maybe it is a variant.
They just call it "the Superspreader-Virus")
lindesnes.kommune.no/hold-deg-hjemm… Image
One person at the #Lindesnes🇳🇴 café infected people from:
2 clinics
a pharmacy
a gym

in 15 different communities

17 ´positive´, so far
>230 quarantined

The café owner was shocked when he learned he was the one who infected them:
"I felt nothing!"
This one starts to freak me out...

#Germersheim district (🇩🇪) found out, why they have a surge in #COVID19:

"Unfortunately, we´re one of the first districts to have
#B117, #B1351 and #P1 at once.
The share of variants in new cases is now 25%"
kreis-germersheim.de/kv_germersheim… Image
#Germersheim found:
-current incubation period seems to be CONSIDERABLY LONGER THAN 5 DAYS.
-asymptomatic (children) have a long ´period of opportunity´ to infect others
-current #RKI contact tracing rules aren´t sufficient
(RKI: ´infectious period starts 2 days before symptoms´) Image
Yes, the majority of #outbreaks in #Germersheim district concerns #schools and kindergartens, at the moment...

But this is the thing that *really* draws my attention:

"increased influx of persons from risk areas"
"infections in housing units of maintenance workers"
🤨 Image
It wasn´t too hard to find, where those maintenance workers from #Germersheim, might be supposed to work...

there´s some big project going on,
attracting ~5.000 contract workers

🧑‍🔧🛠️👨‍🔧🪛👩‍🔧⛓️🧑‍🏭⚙️👨‍🏭🔩👩‍🏭 Image
🤔Ermmmm.... (I appreciate their openness, but)

Entry tests showed: "1% of workers is infected"
"That´s normal" and "in case of large outbreaks: we have back-up crews"
"Workers reside at local hotels"

(Article is from before #Variants were known, there)
bnn.de/karlsruhe/bis-… Image
the company´s own press release stated:
"Workers were tested on arrival, BEFORE they started work at the project."
In 2 weeks, 2.500 workers were PCR tested.
1% of those were found ´positive´.

(that´s still an incidence of 1.000 in that ´community´😕)
miro-ka.de/_public/_asset… Image
Oslo (🇳🇴) found they have a #COVID19 issue with construction sites (a lot of blaming😕on foreign workers)

They´ll start a test raid on construction sites, but can´t force anyone to get tested.🤷

(👉a test is obligatory for entry to the Karlsruhe🇩🇪site)
"Dealing with #B117 among workers"...

Early February, #Dillingen district 🇩🇪 registered an outbreak among workers/families/returnees from abroad.

Today, their incidence is one of #Germany´s lowest.

It was manageable with strict measures.
👉It´s not gone
augsburger-allgemeine.de/dillingen/Coro… Image
Dillingen´s #B117 outbreak was mostly confined to residents of 2 workers´ housings.

They could ´easily´ be quarantined (with strict security surveillance).
Quarantine has ended, now.

But there are already new outbreaks at other companies...
landkreis-dillingen.de/covid-19-landr… Image
the situation in #Germersheim doesn't get better.

Even on low testing sunday, their incidence rose (now 124.8)!
The #schools were supposed to reopen, tomorrow.
That had been changed to "voluntary participance" - and is just now being cancelled.
UK and France have agreed that a #COVID19 test for truck drivers will no longer be necessary, if the stay in UK was shorter than 48 hours.

(Only 0,1% of all truck dirvers tested "positive", recently.
And France´s incidence is higher than UK´s
#Germany is said to prepare a declaration as "High-Incidence Area" for France´s departement #Moselle.

(Yes, incidence is higher than in most german areas - but declaring it a ´Virusvariant-Area´ would be more appropriate, due to high #B1351 presence🤷)
#Germany´s move isn´t a hectic one.
It was prepared (most certainly accorded).

Thursday, districts were already urged to issue special ordinances.
They will make it possible to provide the obligatory test AFTER crossing the border (e.g. at the workplace).
landkreis-karlsruhe.de/Quicknavigatio… Image
In #NewZealand, one more contact of the "mystery" outbreak of Auckland has finally tested #COVID19 ´positive´.
Had been isolating at home, with partly infected family, for one week.🙄
No spread in the community.

(I think it´s the last of 6 family members)
The day everything will return to ´normal´.
It´s not defined by an "incidence rate lower than xy"
or a "reproduction rate below yz"...

it´s when you can be pretty sure EVERY SINGLE CASE AND CONTACT is safely under control.
A prediction from #Poland´s Health Minister:
"The third wave has started. From now on, case numbers will only go up until ~March/April, when we´ll reach the peak of infections which will be ~10-12.000 cases per day."

"But the variants could worsen it".
tvn24.pl/polska/koronaw… Image
This afternoon regions in France (#Moselle) and Germany (Saarland) were relieved:

"There will be no additional restrictions at the border!"

(note: this doesn´t say ´nothing will happen´...)
To keep the traffic flowing across the border France (#Moselle) - Germany,
a high ranking, interministerial, "taskforce" from both countries and regions will need to find a solution.

They´ll discuss tomorrow...
One thing´s for sure:
controls at the border would provoque traffic to collapse.

A test center is being constructed at the border, right now. Its capacity is 500 tests per day.
There are ~15.000 daily commuters.

(Maybe it´ll turn to workplace testing)...
I remember this crazy time (2020), when french colleagues were barred from work, just because they had a french passport.

Rapid tests would certainly have helped
(and would have found infected persons).

We´ll see what they come up with, this time.
#UK just heard the timeframe back to normality:

March - schools & outdoor sports
April - all retail, restaurants (outdoors), staycations...
May - cinemas, hotels, large events...
June - everything is like before (nearly)

Their big hope is #vaccination.
#COVID19 case ditribution in #Aabenraa (Denmark)

a story of children, their parents and 2 weeks of open elementary schools...
experience.arcgis.com/experience/aa4… Image
Sequencing for week 7 is still ongoing, but so far
#B117 in #Denmark seems to contribute to ~57% of new cases.
(in Syddanmark, where Aabenraa is situated, it´s ~87%)
files.ssi.dk/covid19/virusv… Image
Hard-hit Dunkerque (#France) had started a mass test campaign, last week.
It showed results: #Dunkerque´s incidence was catapulted from ~713 (Friday) to over 900 (monday)!
#B117 has a share of ~70%.

The test campaign goes on...
To return to 'normal',

you'd need to be REALLY pretty sure EVERY CASE AND CASUAL (plus) CONTACT is safely controlled,...
🧬It´s there. just look for it🧐

After having a first emergence of #COVID19 cases in one factory, a food producer in South #Germany wanted to take no chances. They had their site´s entire personnel tested.

Surprise: 55 of 300 came out ´positive´ (#B117).
Since beginning of February, #Ireland´s share of #B117 is ~90%.

They still manage to keep case numbers falling,
but less and less successful, every day.
gov.ie/en/collection/… Image
With the current fragile situation, #Ireland is being said to prepare for ~6 weeks more of thier current strict confinement.

Then, in April, vaccination-effects will come to the rescue...
#Ireland seems to have one desire:

opening #schools, again.
At least for the younger grades.

And so they will do. Next monday, already.
Long before any protective effect of vaccinations would be noticeable in their population...
#Austria has reopened #schools since ~2 weeks ago.
That seems to work, with regular self-tests (every 2 days).

´Positive´ tests went up in the second week,
"because kids were getting used to tests and finally started to produce more reliable results"
Recently, #Austria´s case numbers are rising again.
Not said that´s because of schools. Other institutions reopened at the same time (hairdressers, museums,...)

One major difference to #Ireland:
There ain´t 90% of an aggressive #SARSCoV2 variant (yet)
ig.ft.com/coronavirus-ch… Image
A consulting group of experts in #Denmark has calculated that antigen-tests, done twice a week, would reduce infection risk at schools by 50%.

They advise to try it out with older grades...
but NOT in the areas where #B117 has a high prevalence.
sum.dk/Media/7/6/Inds… Image
#Denmark has more than 60% #B117, now.

And they wonder:
"We do not know why #B117 increases the risk of being hospitalized.

But our figures point in the same direction as several studies from the UK that show #B117 may have more serious trajectories"
ssi.dk/aktuelt/nyhede… Image
The story of the outbreak of #B117 in #Norway´s small town of Ulvik:

ONE kid came back from abroad. After tests and quarantine, went to school. And introduced #B117.

In one month´s time ~12-13% of the population had been infected.
vg.no/spesial/corona… Image
A week ago, #Ulvik stated:

"~The outbreak seems to be over. It has burned through.
Recent cases were isolated to families."

They started careful reopening on Monday, February 22.

Since then only 1 case.
(path is known)

(Population 1067, infected: 134)
ulvik.kommune.no/kontaktinforma… Image
a document has been published.

It´s the expert council´s advise on how to deal with the surge of #B1351 in #Moselle (from February 12).

The expert weighed 2 options:
1) Test-Trace-Isolate-Vaccinate
2) Confine the region

They couldn´t decide.
solidarites-sante.gouv.fr/IMG/pdf/avis_c… Image
The experts left the decision on how to deal with #Moselle´s #B1351 issue to politics...

They opted for the "least damaging" option:

and so (once again) a large mass testing campaign started...
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
#Moselle´s X-mas mass testing brought positivity briefly down (as everyone wanted tests for holidays).

With the current mass testing positivity went down again. But recently it stopped falling.

Indicating infections are really spreading in the community... Image
As #Moselle´s Test-Trace-Isolate-Vaccinate strategy seems to lose its power, there might be something else needed to keep the situation in control.

Saying is: there might be a weekend-confinement.
More is expected to be told in a press conference, today.
One surprise measure due to the high #B1351 presence in #Moselle (France):
France will demand a negative PCR test from everyone who wants to ENTER Moselle.
For work-commuters it will be once per week.
Others need it every time.

Prime Minister of #France:
"The situation in our country has deteriorated,
in recent days.
After several months on a plateau, the virus is gaining terrain, again.

In many other countries, like in ours,
something is happening, in the past few days"
#France seems to be worrying about 20 departements, particularly.
They are given one week time to think of own solutions.

"~If the situation hasn´t changed to the better..." (after ONE week?🤔) "...we may think about confinements"
"The ´UK´ variant (#B117) is already 50% of all new cases in #France"
A district in northern #Germany says there was "one case, where only handing something over to a colleague was sufficient to be infected with #B117" !

They now trace casual contacts (less than 15 minutes),
from 5 days before,
and quarantine is 3 weeks !😮
As a result of #B117 outbreaks in northern #Germany, the flagship shipyard Meyer Werft sees rising numbers as well...

(only in infected & quarantined workers, unfortunately.
Cruise ship contracts are low. The yard intends to ax 20% of jobs (at least)).
meyerwerft.de/de/inhalt/coro… Image
That´s welcome news from #UK.

(It´s level 4 now: transmission is high or (rather not) rising exponentially)
Not so welcome news from #Norway:

suddenly, #COVID19 case numbers in #Oslo are (re)surging drastically.
And this also reflects the national situation.
vg.no/spesial/corona… Image
"We are in a very difficult situation with the increasing spread of more infectious virus variants
and more outbreaks that the municipalities are struggling to crack down quickly"

They believe it´s already spreading unnoticed in some communities.
Mediocre news from #Ireland:

Yes, even with a 90% share of #B117,
it´s still possible to maintain a suppression of case numbers.

But it takes a huge effort.

And they really, really hope vaccines will have a large impact, soon (first signs are positive)
assets.gov.ie/124756/a89d2e0… Image
Q "~People are disappointed they don´t see a path out out of restrictions"
A "~the path is vaccines"

Q "with the new variant, what could people do more?"
A "Continue. We were world´s worst, 6 weeks ago. Through people´s actions we´re top 10 now."
All you maskless (since you sit 1.5m apart) office workers...

This one´s for you:
remember the Quarantine Hotel Guard, who´s infection sent #Perth into Lockdown, a month ago?

The hotel had a "non-recirculating" aircon, pushing fresh air into the rooms...
An investigation found, Perth´s Hotel guard ´did everything right´.

He never left his place (3m away from the door of an infected quarantinee).
He officially "didn´t need a mask"

It was the AIRFLOW UNDER THE DOOR, that infected the guard in 3 m DISTANCE
2 weeks ago, #Czechia wanted to reopen schools & shops.

Now "it looks we´re running into a disaster".

"We've made a number of mistakes, but give us another chance. We don't want last year's Bergamo in the Czech Republic."

They´ll go into full #Lockdown
Does this look familiar?
Yes, it says:

"Stay Home
-Support our Health Service-
Save Lives"

#Czechia now copied UK´s early campaign,
to reach the public
(supported by #UK embassy in Prague)
mvcr.cz/docDetail.aspx… Image
The Czech Republic compared to UK.

Jan18: "10% are now #B117"
Jan27: "#B117 is just in isolated pockets, it´s not spreading in community"
Feb22: "80% of the infected may carry #B117"
ig.ft.com/coronavirus-ch… Image
So what went wrong for #Czechia?
A too hesitant reaction to #B117.

"We should have sequenced it, traced it and tried to delay the moment when that mutation becomes dominant.
This did not happen.
Now there is no longer any point in attempting to do that."
#NewZealand´s last #Lockdown lasted 3 days.

But this new case had so many contacts, that they´re sure it will need a 7 day lockdown, to find everyone...

To start with: it´s somehow connected to the last lockdown´s cases - but no link is known...
#NewZealand´s new case "showed symptoms on Tuesday and may have been infectious all week",
while partcipating in the community,
visiting several "popular locations"...
One possible link could be a younger sibling, who is at the highschool, where the recent #NewZealand outbreak took place.
But they already tested ´negative´,
3 times.
Their mother seems to have been infected, even more recently...🤔
I see #NewZealand's worries:

The new case went to study courses for 3 days, while being infectious (Mon/Wed/Thu).

His contacts may already be infectious, spreading it further...

They´re really fast with updating this chart.
An hour earlier, the counter for Auckland´s cluster cases stood at "14".

Now, case 15 was announced (Case O, already in quarantine, no big deal).

Big worry is "case M": didn´t stick to isolation, was positive
stuff.co.nz/national/12438… Image
Whatever they do in #France´s departement Alpes-Maritimes, it didn´t help.
#COVID19 incidence is now 3 times the national average.
The city of Nice (Côte d´Azur) particularly high).

But they came up with a new idea... (🙄)
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
A weekend curfew is in force in #Nice / Côte d´Azur.

It was mainly meant to keep away tourists, who would otherwise flock to the attractive (but highly #COVID19-ridden) area for weekend out.

It seems to be enforced quite strictly
The strict weekend curfew for #Nice / Côte d´Azur had an immediate effect:

virtually all inhabitants left the area,
to spend their weekend somewhere else, as tourists.

There´ll be very low transmission in the Côte d´Azur area, this weekend.
#France seems to screw things up, recently.

The same day they ordered obligatory PCR tests for everyone wanting to ENTER their departement #Moselle,

France´s Prime Minister officially announced, that #B1351 now makes up 60% of all positive cases, there
gouvernement.fr/partage/12128-… Image
#Moselle has 60% share of #B1351 ?!

That didn´t go unheard. It caused "concern" in Germany.
Seems, things went into move on highest levels...
overriding all regional accords.

It´s not fully official, yet.
But Moselle will become "Area of Variant Concern"
The classification as "Area of #Variant Concern" for #Moselle may have consequences.

Cross border travel might effectively be compromised. It would require a massive amount of tests, which #France already says "would be impossible"
What no-one wanted: stopping border traffic to try to confine the variants to one region.

It should have been stopped at the level of infected individuals. The "border" should be their home´s door.

But testing in #Moselle crashes down.
Cases stay high😕
covidtracker.fr/dashboard-depa… Image
it´s official.

Someone at #Germany´s #RKI had to flip their laptop open this sunday. And added one note to the list:

"New Area of #Variant Concern:
France, departement #Moselle
(starting Tuesday morning)"
rki.de/DE/Content/Inf… Image
France "regrets the quasi-closure of the border by Germany",
@CBeaune wants to negotiate easements, like:

a test not every day, but every 48 hours
acceptance of rapid-antigen tests

(What a show. That *is* the standard of Germany´s sharpened entry rules)
According to #Germany´s rules for entry from "Areas of Variant Concern":

- yes, you must be able to show a ´negative´ test result
->this test result may be up to 2 days old

- #RKI specifications explicitly mention rapid-antigen tests as being accepted
bundesgesundheitsministerium.de/fileadmin/Date… Image
that may not have come to attention:

all public transport from/to "Areas of Variant Concern" will be stopped.
The end of commuter trains & busses,
e.g. going between Forbach (#France) and Saarbrücken (#Germany) in 11 minutes.
reiseauskunft.bahn.de/bin/query.exe/… Image
An impression, how incisive Germany´s "Area of Variant Concern" measures can be:

Many work commuters have given up crossing the #Czechia/Germany border.
They either stay in #Germany (hotel costs subsidized by the state)
or stay at home.
Oh no
vg.no/spesial/corona… Image
"The increase in infection we are now seeing is a result of imported variants.
The new virus #variants are spreading faster than previous variants.

Oslo people have taken great responsibility for a long time,
but we must now ask for even more"
Oslo introduces a full Lockdown:

restaurants closed
stores closed
schools "red" (remote)
no events
"avoid visits to other private homes"

More testing, especially for children & adolescents (note: recent events suggested they´re quite efficient spreaders)
Oslo´s #Lockdown rules also point to another major factor in their recent outbreaks:

"We will introduce our own infection control rules for construction sites.
Deliberate or grossly negligent violations shall be punished with up to 6 months prison time"
👷👈👮 Image
"School will be either not happening or remote".

"We need to slow down infections among children and adolescents...we will look at possibilities to introduce mass testing and reduced contacts at school (for other lockdown stages, later)..."
oslo.kommune.no/politikk/byrad… Image
#Moselle prefecture (France) just announced that crossing the border to #Germany will require (from Tuesday on):

a ´negative´ test (max 48 hours old, rapid-antigen tests are OK)
an entry form

+public transport will be interrupted
A data geek assembled #France´s departements in 3 groups, according to their share of #B117

🟥> 50%

Since ~3 weeks ago,
a trend became obvious:
in the groups with more #B117, case numbers grow much more/faster...
meteo-covid.com/graphique-comp… Image
One year ago, we all watched in awe, what was happening in #Italy.
Those curves, they start to surge again...
(doubling every ~10 days)
#Czechia´s #COVID19 situation doesn´t look better.

They introduced harsh restrictions (like confining people´s movements to one ditrict, with strict police controls)
ig.ft.com/coronavirus-ch… Image
Along with #Czechia´s travel restrictions,
comes a massive test campaign in the industry.

"We are not stopping the industry. However, comprehensive testing in companies will be mandatory."

(The goal is to test 2 million workes in 2 weeks!)
#Czechia´s neighbor states have come together to see what they can do...
Austria and Slovenia want to help by taking over some #COVID19 patients for treatment...
Some states (France, Israel, Germany) have aggreed to provide vaccines to Czechia.
At least in the case of Bavaria, the offer to help #Czechia with vaccines isn´t completely altruistic...

#Bavaria hopes, Czechia will vaccinate work commuters (who work in Germany)...
strict entry rules come into force for those from "Area of #Variant Concern" #Moselle (France), who wish to enter #Germany.
There´ll be no border checks, but mobile controls.
A ´negative´ test must be shown on any request.

Public transport stops.
Harsh words from the #Moselle/#Germany border region. They´re disappointed all their ideas "hadn´t been recognized".
"Berlin´s decision is brutal and ill prepared"🙄

(Actually, it was prepared.
In an ordinance from January to prevent spread of #Variants)
At least, the stop for trans-border public transport might be revised (as the ordinance needs to be reviewed tomorrow anyway).

(Maybe require every traveller to show a ´negative´ test?
But France already said this amount of testing would be impossible)🤷
bundesgesundheitsministerium.de/service/gesetz… Image
Germany´s #Germersheim district had a little note in their daily statistics:

"This weekend, there was one re-infection".

Usually the "exotic" variants (#B1351, #P1,...) do that. (They had already mentioned those variants are present, there).
kreis-germersheim.de/kv_germersheim… Image
The tests for those who wish to cross the border from #Moselle to Germany have commenced today.

Some try to get a test in their home town,
some at the border.
Everyone´s waiting.

This needs to be redone every 48 hours.
(Wait for next monday´s chaos...🙄)
Meanwhile #Moselle´s prefect states:

"The situation in Mosellle is getting better...
last week, our incidence peaked at 315, today it´s just 284...

Don´t ever try to fool people - it´s just a bad idea and will backfire)
This is,
what the "positive development" in #Moselle looks like.

Being not overly critical, one could say: it stays the same...
an incidence of ~300.
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
This is, what´s behind the "positive trend" of
#Moselle´s ´not rising case numbers´:
1) testing has been greatly reduced
2) it´s school holidays! (12 days, already).
Shall we look at the positivity rate...In the next tweet - just for fun???
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
😕 sorry, no fun...

Since last week,
positivity rate in #Moselle has started to go up.
As it does in entire France,
or also in the departement Nord.

(looks like things are actually getting worse,
casewise, everywhere...)
covidtracker.fr/covidexplorer/ Image
The situation in #France´s departement ´Nord´ isn´t good at all:
the incidence in Dunkerque has just surpassed 1.000
and while the had tried to use mutual aid of neighboring cities, they now have just started to transfer first patients out of the region...
#Austria has announced, they also have two (smaller) towns with an incidence above 1.000.

To prevent entire districts from locking down, they decided:
Everyone who wants to leave these towns needs a mandatory test.
Military will be staffing checkpoints.
service.salzburg.gv.at/lkorrj/detail?… Image
Tromsø (#Norway) has 44 infected with #B117.
But they think, it´s "under control".

"We have always dealt with the latest infections as if it were the ´UK´ variant"
but "If we can't detect the infection early enough,...we may quickly lose control"
At the moment, #COVID19 spreads in #Norway with variable speeds:
in some regions it´s steady,
in Oslo, it seems to speed up.
While the country´s average is R~1.3,
Oslo has a local R-number of 1.55
fhi.no/contentassets/… Image
This shows, where most people got infected in #Oslo, last week...

1) at home (by family members, I suppose)
2) at workplace
3) at school / kindergarten (students)

The week before, 47 students got infected, now it was 158 (!)
oslo.kommune.no/getfile.php/13… Image
There might be some mistakes in this text, as it is autotranslated...
but various sources confirm: the situation in #Czechia is really as surealistic as it describes.
irozhlas.cz/zpravy-domov/k… Image
Hospitals in #Czechia are overwhelmed.
One after the other declares their "incapabiity to treat".
Only real emergencies will be treated.

Anyone else will have to wait.
#Czechia´s Health Minister just announced:
- a work order for all healthcare workers to help and treat #COVID19 patients.
- it may finally be possible to transfer patients to other countries
#Slovakia has two key points:

~ It´s not all the new variants´fault: "there are other countries that had variants earlier, and they still do fine"

~ "our biggest mistake: trusting in antigen tests as a weekly surveillance. They´re not made for this!"

#Germany´s governments have been fighting hard, until late at night.
They now finally came up with a plan.
A promise of "more normality and safe contacts"...

one major pillar is:
(in Slovakia, this turned out bad)
bundesregierung.de/resource/blob/… Image
#Germany´s reopening plan.

It´s defined by incidence numbers
and fixed dates.

Not one trace left of #COVID19 contact tracing.

It resembles an addict´s elaborately planned path to demise.
Promising to stop, when it gets too bad
No warning shall be heard.
bundeskanzlerin.de/bkin-de/aktuel… Image
Oh yes,
we should keep an eye on that.

#France´s Pas-de-Calais departement (next to Dunkerque) is now also seeing rapidly rising #COVID19 case numbers.
It seems to spread into the country.

Residents of 23 departements are asked not to leave their areas.
francetvinfo.fr/sante/maladie/… Image
Another measure in #France´s 23 "risk areas":

large / medium size shopping centres will have to close.
#France will bring 10.000 doses to Pas-de-Calais.

"General mobilization: mayors, caregivers, hospitals - everyone must be on the bridge, including on weekends, to vaccinate as quickly as possible.
We have entered a race against time in the epidemic..."
"Yes, #France sees rising #COVID19 numbers.
But it´s not -at least not for the moment- the exponential growth that some models had predicted..."
#Austria is "alarmed" by recent #COVID19 developments.
After reopening schools and shops (with some testing) ~4 weeks ago,
case numbers are surging, now...
Not all too surprising,
a growing number of #Austria´s kids is starting to get #COVID19 infected.

(with schools open, 5-14 year olds form a major part of new infections! 5-24 year olds make up for ~26% of all new infections)
Maybe #COVID19 statistics starting at the age of "0 years" are missing one point...
🙄And... if my test turns out ´positive´, you will still let me out again, will you?
Hello... HELLO 😱aaaaaaaaaah

(I´ll take the swab instead, thanks)
They say "everything will be fine,
-we will vaccinate" (a bit more, starting in ~4 weeks)
-we will provide tests for everyone, once a week" (they don´t have them, yet)

But the grand reopening will start on Monday.
Reopening, all the while this is happening in Baden-Württemberg:

1070 new #COVID19 cases detected
638 of them are #Variant cases (mostly #B117)

gesundheitsamt-bw.de/lga/DE/Fachinf… Image
The promise of "more normality"
already unleashed its power today:
one cashier needed to constantly remind customers: "take a cart, please"
no distancing anymore, windows shut ("its´s cold")
workers ope