Germany’s new COVID-19 cases have jumped to a six-month high on Thursday, with more than 28,000 infections reported nationwide.
The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) said 28,037 new infections have been registered in the past 24 hours, up from 23,212 reported on Wednesday.
The institute has confirmed 126 coronavirus-related deaths.
The country’s active cases climbed to 192,000 on Thursday, marking a new high in the current fourth wave of the pandemic.
The German Hospital Federation has warned that the surge in new infections and hospitalizations have already started putting strain on the hospitals.
The federation’s chairman, Dr. Gerald Gass, told local media that if the current trend continues, nearly 3,000 seriously ill COVID-19 patients will likely require treatment in intensive care units (ICUs) in two weeks.
“Even if the hospitals could manage this, it would not be possible without reducing normal operations,” he told Redaktionsnetzwerk Deutschland (RND).
As of Thursday, 1,768 seriously ill coronavirus patients are receiving treatment in intensive care units, with 918 of them on mechanical ventilators, according to official data.
German hospitals currently maintain nearly 22,200 ICU beds, down from 26,500 at the beginning of this year. Staff shortage remains a serious problem, as many healthcare workers were exhausted and quit their jobs during the pandemic.