a guest Feb 27th, 2020 85 Never
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- English transcript (by me, native German but not native English, so no gurantee for error-freeness).
- I tried to focus on the content and didn't translate word for word, e.g. I put "welcome" instead of the "let me wholeheartly welcome you",
- hope that makes it a little easier to read.
- start at 3:28 in the video, after checking watch (Germans, have to love them xD)
- S. Glasmacher:
- Yeah, I think we start, it's ten o'clock. Welcome to the first press briefing concerning the new Corona virus.
- We will offer this every working day [Mo-Fr] henceforth, meaning unless you hear differently, it will happen daily.
- I'd also like to welcome the watchers and listeners on twitter, we are live-streaming this, and the viewers on Phoenix [a German news channel],
- that, as far as we know, are also live-streaming this.
- Some points regarding the structure:
- We have here Prof. Wieler, president of the Robert Koch institute, and Prof. Schaade, vice president of the Robert Koch institute.
- Mr. Wieler will open with a short statement, afterwards you will be free to ask questions; at the end we might allow individual statements,
- and of course Mr. Schaade will also answer then.
- Mr. Wieler, please.
- Prof. Wieler:
- Thanks Ms Glasmacher. Dear everyone from the press and the ones watching the live-stream, welcome.
- First, I'll quickly summarize what happened in the last weeks to show you that this is a very dynamic incident and that we are dealing with a virus
- that we only know for a short time and where we get new informations about almost daily. This is why it is so important to give this assessment of the situation every day.
- On December 8th, in Wuhan, a big city in China in the province of Hubei, we saw the first cases of people suffering from pneumonia, where it wasn't clear what exactly they got.
- On December 31st, cases were officially reported to the WHO.
- On January 1st, a market, an animal market, was closed down in Wuhan.
- Already on January 7th, the virus DNA was decoded and the information shared with the world, allowing the development of a test for the virus.
- This was a very, very important step and happened very fast.
- On January 13th, we had the first case outside of China, since then these cases are increasing.
- In Germany, we recorded the first case on January 27th, in Bavaria.
- To give you a short idea about how intensively the Robert Koch institute is working on these cases:
- On January 6th, we established a "situation workgroup" ["Lage AG" in German], meaning that colleagues intensively worked on that, gathering information,
- sharing information with international organisations, making risk assessments.
- On January 14th, we first introduced a coordinating position [as in "someone responsible for that"], meaning an in house scaling and putting more people on this topic,
- more intensely researching the topic, exchanging informations, doing daily risk assessments.
- From the day of the first German case, 01/27, i.e. about 4 weeks ago, we activated our situation room/assessment center ["Lagezentrum" in German],
- meaning that since when workers are working on it in two shifts, seven days a week from 8am to 9pm, continuously discussing, developing recommendations,
- are in contact with doctors, with epidemic ministers of the federal states ["Länder' in German], updating the website that we also actualize daily.
- You are well aware what happened in Bayern, at the first German case: All in all we have 14 people who are, save one, all discharged already; the last one is not discharged yet
- as they are still releasing viruses.
- Then we had two citizens of Wuhan, they too are healthy and discharged.
- Each day we re-assess the risk, we observe what happens in other countries, cases arising, how things are developing.
- Until the evening of two days ago, that was what was going on in Germany, since that evening we have further cases in NRW and Baden-Würtemberg.
- In B-W, we have a 25 year old male that traveled to Milan; related to this journey and in his proximity there were further cases.
- In NRW, we as of now have 6 cases, originating from a male between 40 and 50 who showed symptoms and is currently being treated at a hospital in Dusseldorf.
- What happens if you have such cases?
- The local health governments start an intensive "contact tracing", as we call it, meaning that of course these persons get treated if sick, they are obviously quarantined,
- either at home or in hospitals. But one of the most important things is to find and inform contact persons to put them under quarantine.
- Meaning this is the task we are working on, we are calling that "containment" strategy, meaning we will try to stop the spread of this infection as much as possible.
- This is the goal of our current actions.
- This incident is very dynamic, world-wide we have 46 countries affected so far. Almost every day in the last few weeks, another new country was added; a very dynamic incident
- that we need to monitor and include into our risk assessment.
- All of us, in all countries, take every possible effort to reduce the spread of this virus as much as possible, resp. slowing down the spread as much as possible.
- Why is that so important?
- Because this virus is that new, there is not yet a treatment and no vaccine, it is important to learn more every day; how to better treat patients, how the virus is transmitted and
- how we can contribute to slowing down the spread and contain the virus as far as possible. We need to gain time, and we do everything we can for that.
- Of course we cannot exclude the possiblity of the virus spreading further.
- This was my statement so far, I am open for questions.
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