German health officials said on Sunday that the country had registered 10,315 new coronavirus infections and 312 deaths in the last 24 hours, but noted that diminished counting at the tail end of the New Year’s holiday might be distorting the data.
The data indicated great variations within the country. Overall, the country’s infectious disease agency, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), recorded 139.6 active cases per 100,000 residents. But the eastern state of Saxony’s level stood at 329.7, while the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein had a level of 77.4.
However, the RKI cautioned that all of the numbers might be altered as more data come in. Some states don’t report data on weekends, and many people might have opted not to get tested during the last weekend of the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.
Just before the holidays, on December 22, Germany reported a rate of 197.6, its worst number during the pandemic to date.
Overall, the country has recorded 1,765,666 cases, with 34,272 deaths and 1,381,900 people who have recovered.
But the challenge of preventing the spread of the disease was highlighted again on Sunday, when police in the western German town of Herford had to break up a church service.
More than 100 unmasked people were in attendance, singing at times, in violation of guidelines that limit the number of people who may meet in an attempt to slow the spread of the disease.
Police said they would issue fines and warnings.