Friday, February 26, 2021

Corona strategy: Seibert dampens hopes for easing


Germany After Merkel’s advance

Seibert dampens hopes for easing – “Good development is over”

“The good development is over at the moment”

Chancellor Merkel apparently wants to open the lockdown with a multi-stage plan. However, the renewed increase in the number of infections is a cause for concern. See the federal government’s press conference on the current corona situation here.

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Chancellor Angela Merkel defines three areas in which more freedom is to come soon and sees a “longing for openings”. But government spokesman Steffen Seibert corrected these statements a little later.

KAngela Merkel (CDU) has again pleaded for a cautious strategy for possible openings in view of the concerns of a third corona wave. Opening steps would have to be wisely introduced coupled with increased tests, said Merkel on Monday, according to information from participants in online consultations of the CDU presidium. The citizens are longing for an opening strategy, she understands.

Merkel made it clear that she saw three areas for which packages of an opening strategy had to be put together. On the one hand it is about the area of ​​personal contacts, on the other hand it is about schools and vocational schools as well as a third package with sports groups, restaurants and culture. The aim is to put packages together to make opening possible and then adapt, she was quoted as saying.

From this Tuesday on, according to this information, a working group with Chancellor Helge Braun (CDU) and the heads of the state chancelleries of the federal states will meet on the subject of openings. The next Prime Minister’s Conference with the Chancellor, planned for March 3, is to be prepared. The aim is then to present plans for possible opening steps. Braun said, according to information from participants in the CDU presidium, the mutations of the corona virus unfortunately destroyed the good development in Germany.

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The presidium also discussed the possibility of how family and company doctors could be involved in vaccinations, it said. Health Minister Jens Spahn has made it clear that this only makes sense if, as with the flu vaccination, you have three to five million vaccine doses available per week. Overall, however, the assumption of costs by the federal government, which is planned from March 1, could help with the corona tests. He made it clear that the first approvals of self-tests will be available from next week.

Spahn had recently announced again and again that from March 1, all citizens would be offered to be tested free of charge by trained staff with rapid antigen tests – for example in test centers, practices or pharmacies. Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said after a meeting of the Corona cabinet that this should only be discussed at the federal-state consultations on March 3.

In order to safeguard daycare and school openings, educators and teachers should be vaccinated earlier. According to a draft by the Ministry of Health, “people who work in childcare facilities, daycare and primary schools” move from the third to the second group in the vaccination sequence. The amended vaccination ordinance could come into force this Wednesday. The health ministers of the federal states spoke out in a meeting without dissenting votes for this new regulation, as Bavaria’s health minister Klaus Holetschek (CSU) announced.

Government spokesman urges patience about mutations

Seibert dampened hopes of a quick opening on Monday afternoon. “The good development that has brought us the number of infections falling every day over a long period is over for the moment. The numbers are rising again. ”The share of the British virus variant is 20 to 25 percent. One must assume that this proportion will continue to increase. This should be taken into account with “careful opening steps”.

Seibert urged patience. As a result of the partial opening of schools in most federal states this Monday, there is “a considerable increase in contacts and thus also in transmission risks”. Nobody wants to take back openings. “What we open, we want to hold out.” But it is now important to first look very carefully to what extent the school openings bring about changes in the infection process.

The curve of new infections showed up for the fourth day in a row on Sunday – despite the lockdown that has been in place since mid-December. On Monday, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) reported hardly any change: within one day the health authorities reported 4,369 new infections, a week ago it was 4,426. At the same time, however, the number of new infections reported within seven days per 100,000 inhabitants (seven-day incidence) continued to rise, to 61.0 nationwide. The day before it was still at 60.2.



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