The number of new corona infections and the incidence have reached new highs.

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) gave the number of new infections in the past 24 hours on Friday morning as 248,838.

This exceeded the previous high of 236,120 from the previous day.

Meanwhile, the seven-day incidence on Friday was 1349.5, well above the previous record of 1283.2 the previous day.

As the RKI also announced, 170 other deaths related to the corona virus were recorded on Friday.

On Friday a week ago, the health authorities nationwide reported 190,148 new infections.

The incidence was 1073.0 a week ago.

The indicator quantifies the number of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants over a period of seven days.

According to the RKI, the health authorities have recorded a total of 10,671,602 cases of infection since the beginning of the pandemic.

The total number of registered corona deaths in Germany is now 118,504.

The RKI puts the number of people who have recovered from corona disease in Germany at around 7,953,200.

In November, the federal and state governments had defined the so-called hospitalization incidence as the decisive benchmark for tightening or relaxing the corona measures.

This value indicates how many people per 100,000 inhabitants are hospitalized within seven days because of a corona infection.

According to the latest RKI report, the hospitalization incidence on Thursday was 5.00 nationwide and thus higher than it has been since Christmas.

In the most recent weekly report on Thursday, the RKI pointed out that 41 percent of the reported corona tests in Germany last week were positive.

In the previous week it was still 32 percent.

Due to the "massive" increase in "infection pressure", there have long been fears that the registered infection numbers do not reflect the actual infection process.

The RKI explained: "Even if every individual case is no longer recorded in the reporting system", additional indicators allow "a reliable assessment of the overall development".

For the assessment of the situation in the current situation of the pandemic, "the focus is not on recording all infections caused by SARS-CoV-2, but on the development of the number and severity of the diseases".

Medical practices consistently full

The Robert Koch Institute estimates the number of doctor visits in Germany to be around 320,000 due to Corona in the past week.

The RKI writes in its weekly report on Thursday evening that the values ​​​​of the fourth wave are already significantly exceeded in almost all age groups.

Since the turn of the year, the number of doctor visits has increased, compared to the previous week it stagnated, although late registrations are still possible.

According to RKI calculations, 0.9 to 1.8 percent of the population aged 15 and over had contracted Covid-19 with symptoms of an acute respiratory disease in the previous week.

In the case of children up to the age of 15, the Institute speaks of a proportion of those affected of around 1.6 to 3.2 percent.

The RKI has been presenting such calculations for around two weeks - also because laboratories and health authorities are at the limit when recording infected people and it is assumed that the reporting data is becoming increasingly incomplete.

"The 7-day incidence is still highest in the group of children and adolescents aged 5 to 19 years", but it has also risen significantly again in the older age groups, the RKI states.

"The #Omicron wave is slowly reaching the elderly population," the authority commented on Twitter.

An increase among older people has also been feared for some time in view of a possible heavier burden on the healthcare system.

Meanwhile, the apparently even better transferrable omicron sub-variant BA.2 continues to increase in Germany at a low level.

For the week ending January 23, the RKI reports a share of 5.1 percent - around twice as much as the week before.

The data come from a sample of cases where full genetic analysis was performed.

Accordingly, the omicron subtype BA.1 has dominated in Germany so far.

BA.2 not yet virulent in this country

BA.2 had spread widely in countries such as Denmark, among others.

German experts also expect this in Germany and fear that this could prolong the omicron wave.

The Charité virologist Christian Drosten said on Tuesday in the NDR podcast “The Corona Virus Update” that the infection protection measures in force here are likely to slow down the spread compared to other countries.

Drosten explained the two Omicron subtypes with a car metaphor and said about BA.2: "The motor has a few more horsepower." He referred to data on infections in households in Denmark.

The RKI writes about this study in the weekly report that it indicates "that the BA.2 subline is more easily transmissible than BA.1 and has immune-vasive properties that could explain this higher transmissibility".