Bremen to test all positive corona tests for mutation
With the aim of preventing the further spread of highly-contagious strains of COVID-19, the state of Bremen will now test all positive coronavirus samples for the “British” variant B.1.1.7.
First cases of “British” corona mutation detected in Bremen
The first two cases of the B.1.1.7. strain of coronavirus were detected on Monday in Bremen, and on Wednesday a further case was confirmed in Bremerhaven. The mutation is said to be up to 70 percent more contagious than the previously known form. It is still unclear whether it is also more deadly, but the Bremen health department doesn’t want to take any risks.
It is therefore implementing new safety measures to prevent the strain from spreading further, Health Senator Claudia Bernhard announced this week. In future, every positive coronavirus test in the federal state will be checked for the mutation. This is already standard practice in Berlin, but up until now only approximately every fifth positive sample has undergone further testing in Bremen.
An “acute test team” will also be set up in order to significantly accelerate testing in the event of outbreaks, according to the health department. In the event of mutations occurring in workplaces or other facilities in the future, a response protocol should also be developed.
Childcare staff to be given vaccine priority
The smallest state in Germany is also making a few changes when it comes to childcare, after some states, including Baden-Württemberg, registered cases of the mutation in daycare facilities. Firstly, state authorities are looking to adapt the vaccination priority list so that employees in daycare centres and schools are higher up the pecking order.
In addition, from February 1 each “daycare group” may contain a maximum of 12 children per week, of which a maximum of 10 children can be present at the same time.