The Robert Koch Institute in Germany reported on Sunday the country’s R rate has rapidly increased. The country’s R rate was 1.06 on Friday, but as of Sunday Germany’s R rate stands at 2.88 according to official figures. The significant spike of infection in Germany has sparked concerns for a potential second COVID-19 wave in the country.
What is the R number?
The R number refers to the rate of reproduction of a disease.
The R number is used to determine a disease’s ability to spread, and reflects the number of people one infected person is likely to infect on average.
As of Sunday Germany’s R rate is 2.88, which means out of every 100 people who contract COVID-19, another 288 are likely to get infected as well.
Germany’s latest R number is based on a moving four-day average data, reflecting infection rates one to two weeks ago.
READ MORE: EU is ‘ready to work with China’ in key video summit this morning
As COVID-19 remains a global threat, nations are determined to keep the R rate below 1 at the current time.
If the R rate is lower than 1, it suggests the spread of a disease will continue to slow.
However if a disease’s R rate is higher than 1, the spread of the disease becomes harder to control and more people will become infected.
If the COVID-19 R rate increases above 1 in a country, there is concern for a second wave of the epidemic.
Why has Germany’s R number increased?
As of June 21, Germany has confirmed 189,822 cases of COVID-19 in total, and of this figure 8,882 people have died from COVID-19 in the country.
The Robert Koch Institute said recent localised outbreaks of COVID-19 have been reported primarily in four regions: the districts of Gütersloh and Warendorf in North Rhine-Westphalia, and the cities of Magdeburg (Saxony Anhalt) and Neukölln (city district of Berlin).
Nursing homes and hospitals have reported outbreaks, as have institutions for asylum seekers and refugees.
Meat processing plants and logistic companies have also reported serious outbreaks, and there have also been outbreaks among seasonal harvest workers.
China deals devastating blow to Australian farming industry – ANALYSIS
Trump humiliation: POTUS ‘furious’ at Tulsa rally turnout – INSIGHT
EU on the BRINK: Angela Merkel says Europe is vulnerable – ANALYSIS
An increase in cases has also been reported in connection to family gatherings and religious events.
However, the Robert Koch Institute also highlighted a recent outbreak in a slaughterhouse as a cause of the increase in infection rate.
Last week more than 1,000 employees tested positive for COVID-19 a meat processing plant.
The Institute said in its latest update: “The increase in the 7-day incidence in the district Guetersloh is due to an outbreak in a meat processing plant.
“More than one thousand employees tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. The affected plant was temporarily closed at short notice and all employees are being quarantined as well as their household members.
“In addition, all schools and day-care centres in the district have been closed since 18th of June until the end of the summer holidays (11th of August 2020).
“The town of Verl, located in the affected district, has enforced a quarantine zone for those areas in which higher numbers of the processing plant’s employees are housed.
“The outbreak in Guetersloh is linked to an outbreak in Warendorf. Employees of the meat processing company are residents of neighbouring districts.”
The army has been deployed to the region to help with testing and quarantine measures.