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76 nuns test positive for COVID-19 at convent in Germany
A group of 76 nuns tested positive for COVID-19 in an outbreak at a Franciscan convent in Germany, church officials announced on Tuesday.
The convent's Mother Superior told The Associated Press that an additional 85 nuns tested negative for the virus that's rocking the monastery located close to the Dutch border in Thuine.
"We are grateful that so far nobody is in the hospital," Sister Maria Cordis Reiker told the AP.
Reiker reported that the church authorities were still awaiting test results for the 160 nonclerical employees at the convent, including those who work at the nursing home and at the kitchen and wash house.
The convent also runs schools, including a boys' boarding school and a vocational school, whose plans are "all still in flux," according to Reiker.
The first positive cases at the convent were identified last week, prompting local health officials to order a quarantine.
Germany has confirmed almost 1.1 million COVID-19 cases and at least 16,895 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
Officials from the Robert Koch Institute reported on Tuesday that 13,604 new COVID-19 cases and 388 fatalities were recorded in Germany in the last 24 hours. Authorities have expressed concern about rising cases among older populations as infections among the younger population are going down, according to the AP.
The AP noted that a majority of German Catholic nuns are elderly, as the church has struggled to attract younger women to become nuns.