By NewsDesk @infectiousdiseasenews
The crisis team of the Federal Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Interior made further decisions on health security against coronavirus infections in its second meeting.
The measures in cross-border traffic to Germany are intensified on all traffic routes and principles for risk assessment of major events are adopted.
“The structure of the crisis team shows that we take the outbreak of the coronavirus seriously and respond to the fact that the epidemic has now reached Germany,” said Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn.
So far, it has been possible to isolate and treat infected people in Germany and to provide close contact to the contact persons. However, it is now unclear whether the infection chains can still be broken. The crisis team has therefore taken its first decisions. Air travelers from infection areas will in future have to fill out exit cards and provide information about their whereabouts. This no longer only affects air travelers from China, but also from Italy, Japan, South Korea and Iran. In future, travelers will also receive information not only on airplanes and airports, but also on trains and buses about how they can recognize the respiratory disease and how they can protect themselves against it.
The day before, the Minister of Health had met with representatives of doctors, pharmacists, health insurers, hospitals and nursing staff to discuss possible reactions to the outbreak of the virus.
Professional associations and organizations promised to provide their members and the public with even better information about the new type of respiratory disease in the future. Medical staff should also ask patients about suspected cases of travel to infection areas or contact with infected people. And for the population, the advice is: don’t go to the emergency room every time you cough, but call the doctor if you get infected after a stay in infected areas or get in contact with the infected, flu, respiratory problems or fever.
The crisis team plans to procure medical protective equipment such as respiratory protection, gloves and the like. For this purpose, production capacities in Germany are to be increased and the resources of the European partners are pooled.
So far, 129 cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection have been confirmed in Germany. After the infection cluster at a company in Bavaria (14 cases) and individual cases among German citizens, which had been flown out of Wuhan in early February 2020, cases of illness have become known in several federal states since February 25, 2020.
The cases have been reported in North Rhine-Westphalia (74), Bavaria (23), Baden-Wurttemberg (15), Hesse (8), 2 each in Rheinland-Pfalz and Schleswig Holstein, one each in Bremen, Hamburg and Lower Saxony. Two cases were repartriated.
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