Politicians on Corona measures: Calls for an exit strategy are getting louder


Status: 03.02.2022 8:29 a.m

Despite the increasing number of infections, the demands in politics for easing are getting louder. The opposition and the FDP are calling for opening steps to be prepared now. Medical representatives urge caution – restrictions are still unavoidable.

In the debate about possible lifting of corona measures, more and more politicians are calling for opening steps to be prepared. Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder told the newspaper “Bild” that “consistent opening steps” should now be taken.

Söder already mentioned concrete relaxation steps: “Firstly: With an FFP2 mask we can do without the 2G rule in retail. You only stay in shops for a short time. That could be implemented nationwide.” Secondly, the 2G rule should be retained in the catering trade, but no additional test should be carried out.

In addition, more spectators could be admitted to stadiums again. “In football we are now at 25 percent. We can go to 50 percent spectators with a capacity limit, but with gaps.” Söder added: “And finally, we should proceed according to the principle: Where FFP2 masks are worn, contact restrictions can be reduced.” Söder called on Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) to draw up a step-by-step plan for this.

Demand for “exit strategy”

FDP General Secretary Bijan Djir-Sarai is also calling for an “exit strategy” with clearly defined steps. This must already be available if the number of infections decreases again at the end of February, as forecast by experts, Djir-Sarai told the dpa news agency.

The easing debate had recently picked up speed despite the increasing number of infections. Some countries are taking the first steps, such as lifting the 2G rule in retail. The discussion was also fueled by far-reaching openings in countries such as Denmark.

Scholz: “Unfortunately we’re not there yet”

Chancellor Olaf Scholz does not want to follow the government’s course in Copenhagen for the time being. Decisions about easing steps can be made after the infections have peaked. “But unfortunately we haven’t got there yet,” said the SPD politician on Wednesday evening in the ZDF “heute-journal”.

The next crisis talks between the Prime Ministers of the federal states and Scholz are planned for February 16th – around the expected peak of the Omicron wave. Nationwide easing could be agreed there. At their last consultation on January 24, the federal and state governments agreed to develop “opening perspectives” as soon as the health system could be overburdened.

Buschmann: “Get out of the mode of improvisation”

When asked whether there should be a concrete easing schedule for the next federal-state meeting, Federal Justice Minister Marco Buschmann said in the daily topics, politics must “get out of the mode of improvisation” and “spontaneous midnight decisions”.

However, it is questionable whether one will be ready by mid-February, when Germany will probably be at the peak of the wave. “Nevertheless, we have to start the preparatory work now,” said the FDP politician. “We should see which measures can be lifted and in what order once the risk situation has eased.”

Federal Minister of Justice Marco Buschmann on the prospects of easing after the peak of the omicron wave

daily topics 10:15 p.m., 2.2.2022

The Greens health expert Janosch Dahmen advised caution on Wednesday evening at “maischberger. die woche”. “The motto for the next few weeks must be: forward-looking planning, but not hasty relaxation,” he said. The maxim for action is “realistic planning with a step-by-step scheme, adapted to a data basis that provides this and not linked to data that are hasty promises that cannot be kept because the situation may get worse after all”.

“Not the right time to relax”

Medical representatives are also more reluctant to relax soon. The German Medical Association and the German Hospital Society (DKG) are calling for step-by-step plans for opening steps in corona policy, but the restrictions are still unavoidable. “If the infection process develops as epidemiologists predict, the number of cases will gradually decrease from the end of February,” said the President of the German Medical Association, Klaus Reinhardt, the editorial network Germany (RND). “The federal and state governments should therefore be prepared and, if possible, prepare phased plans for openings, which can then hopefully be implemented soon.”

But Reinhardt also pointed out: “Germany has the second oldest population in Europe and a low vaccination rate among older people compared to Denmark and England.” The CEO of the German Hospital Society (DKG), Gerald Gaß, also tells the RND that now is not the right time to relax in view of the increasing number of patients in the hospitals. “But of course we need clear prospects for openings in the near future, once we get past the omicron wave.”


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