BERLIN — Germany’s death toll in the coronavirus pandemic has topped 60,000 even as new infections decline significantly.
The country’s disease control center, the Robert Koch Institute, said Friday that 855 more deaths were reported over the past 24 hours. That brought Germany’s total so far to 60,597.
In Europe, the U.K., Italy, France, Russia and Spain have reported more deaths. Germany had a relatively low death rate in the pandemic’s first phase, but saw much more infections in the fall and winter — peaking around a month ago — and hundreds of deaths per day in recent weeks. The death toll hit 50,000 two weeks ago.
A partial shutdown that started at the beginning of November was widened into a second lockdown in mid-December and is still in place. Chancellor Angela Merkel and state governors are due to discuss on Wednesday what, if any, restrictions can be lifted after its current expiry date of Feb. 14.
The Robert Koch Institute said Friday that 12,908 new coronavirus cases were reported in the past day, compared with 14,022 a week earlier. There were 79.9 new cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days — down from a peak of nearly 200 in late December but still above the government’s target of a maximum 50.