Corona policy: the next disaster? | tagesschau.de



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Status: 10/28/2021 11:50 a.m.

Rising numbers of infections and Covid19 patients in clinics, a vaccination rate that is too low, no campaign for boosters: Germany is stumbling into the next Corona winter, says Patrick Gensing. Another disaster threatens.

A comment by Patrick Gensing, tagesschau.de

Germany stumbles into the next Corona winter – and again it threatens to get dark. Although more than enough vaccine was delivered, although one wanted to learn from mistakes, when the country actually has the best chance of coping with the virus.

But instead of – as in Denmark, for example – developing a stringent and far-sighted strategy and communicating it clearly and distinctly, the cacophony continues. In view of the upcoming winter, significantly increasing numbers of infections and warnings about the consequences for hospitals, various easing of the situation are currently being discussed. Ironically, the group that currently has the highest incidence and is still completely unvaccinated should perhaps no longer wear masks: namely, children in schools. Schools, many of which are now equipped with air filters.

Fortunately, it has now been documented that children are significantly less likely to get seriously ill with Covid19 than adults, so the position could be taken that they should not be subject to any restrictions and that a “contamination” is justifiable after weighing the facts – but it obviously wants that clear nobody pronounce. Instead, citizens can try to find their way out of the polyphonic chorus of proposals and projects. Some federal states are striving for this solution, others in turn a different one – a clear course cannot be discerned. It is obvious that this continues to unsettle parents.

End of vaccination campaign?

Incidentally, the youngest would be best protected against infections with a high vaccination rate. But since the beginning of the pandemic, the wildest speculations and conspiracy legends have blossomed. In addition, there are uncertainties and worries that are fueled by misleading stories about alleged “vaccination massacres” and serious side effects. Such disinformation campaigns have taken on a new dimension in the pandemic, but are far from new – so one of the most important tasks would have been to develop an effective strategy against it.

The statements made by footballer Joshua Kimmich show how much there is a lack of information about vaccinations and how unsubstantiated claims get caught up even in people who are not generally anti-vaccinations: that vaccinations can very rarely cause long-term effects, but they do not suddenly appear later, experts have been emphasizing for many months. This realization is only now emerging in the general public.

The question of vaccination is deliberately politicized

The vaccination skepticism is evidently even solidifying – although the vast majority of Covid19 patients would not have to be there in the clinics, they would have been vaccinated. Although people in other countries would be happy to have free access to the vaccine to protect themselves and others. Although European countries had bitter experiences with overburdened clinics and catastrophic consequences. In Germany, demagogues have turned the question of vaccination status into a question of fate and specifically linked it with political fanaticism and crude theses about a dictatorship that rules here.

The fronts are so hardened that many skeptics and opponents are evidently even more skeptical and radical in their opposition. More pressure is obviously counterproductive – a reasonable conversation hardly seems possible.

No urgency with booster vaccinations?

So too few people are vaccinated – presumably, because very exact figures are probably not available; and it is already foreseeable that many millions should soon get a booster. The number of breakthroughs in vaccination has been increasing for weeks, again the elderly in particular are most at risk – but not exclusively, even middle-aged people could soon only have a weakened vaccination protection.

Data from Israel, among others, on the effectiveness of the booster vaccinations are on the table, but those responsible in Germany are only slowly beginning to urge people over the age of 70 to be vaccinated again. The STIKO wants to check again very carefully, and once again one has the feeling that there is no particular urgency at all to start a new vaccination campaign. The fact that the functioning infrastructure of vaccination centers and free tests has meanwhile disappeared, dubious online providers instead earn money with negative certificates and vaccination certificates are falsified that the problems in care have become even greater, rounds off the overall picture.

Did you learn nothing from your mistakes?

Last autumn, the federal and state governments had hesitated for far too long before taking effective protective measures against the second wave. Only when the numbers continued to rise did those responsible act – too late. The consequences were massive restrictions on fundamental rights for months – some without any scientific evidence – and tens of thousands of Covid19 deaths.

Exactly one year later, federal politics is virtually paralyzed due to the change of government, the states are implementing their own strategies and action could only be taken again when it is actually too late. Although there is more than enough vaccine, the next disaster looms.

Editorial note

Comments generally reflect the opinion of the respective author and not that of the editors.


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