Corona in Germany: Shortened quarantine due to Omikron?

Status: December 28, 2021 3:23 p.m.

It is probably only a matter of time before the Omikron variant also dominates in this country. The calls for a shortening of the corona quarantine are now all the louder. Otherwise the country threatens to be paralyzed, stressed CSU boss Söder.

In view of the feared rapid spread of the highly contagious Omikron variant also in Germany, CSU boss Markus Söder has reiterated his call for a revision of the quarantine regulations. “Of course we have to review the current quarantine rules. With a rapidly growing epidemic, we cannot simply paralyze the whole country from one day to the next,” said the Bavarian Prime Minister of the “Bild” newspaper.

Söder emphasized: “This applies not only to the critical infrastructure, but also to the normal life of people.” The federal government must now quickly make a proposal. Bavaria’s Health Minister Klaus Holetschek had also spoken out in favor of shortening the quarantine period. The CSU politician said in the joint morning magazine of ARD and ZDF: “It’s important that we check the quarantine.” He expects the Robert Koch Institute to submit proposals on this very soon.

Federal government sees “no reason yet”

The federal government, on the other hand, is currently not aiming to relax the quarantine rules, but considers changes to be possible. “At the moment there is no reason to do so,” said a spokesman for the Federal Ministry of Health on Monday. In the pandemic, there must be a “step by step” response to developments.

With a view to the rapid spread of the Omikron variant, calls had been made to adapt the quarantine rules. The background is the fear that there could be staff shortages due to massive quarantine in critical infrastructure such as the police or hospitals.

The existing pandemic plans of the federal and state governments “theoretically” already provide opportunities to relax quarantine rules, especially when it comes to maintaining critical infrastructure, said the spokesman for the Ministry of Health.

USA cut quarantine in half

Other countries where the omicron variant is predominant have already changed their respective rules. In the USA, for example, the quarantine time for corona infected people without symptoms has been halved. So far, it has been said that those affected should go into isolation for ten days. The recommendation has now been reduced to five days.

The reason for the step was not just that Corona is particularly contagious in the early stages of the infection. But also with the fact that the rapidly increasing number of cases is also increasingly having an impact on the economy.

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