The difference between vaccination full throttle and vaccination failure has seldom been so clearly visible!
In Berlin, Chancellor Angela Merkel (66, CDU) cashed in on Health Minister Spahn’s promise of mass tests, who in turn declared that a long-term lockdown exit plan is unrealistic.
In London, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson (56) announced almost at the same time with joy: We will tip ALL Corona measures in the next four months – the reason: vaccinations.
The vaccination rate in Great Britain is now around 27 percent (as of February 20), there have already been 18.4 million picks, in Germany there are only 5.2 million (six percent). And the backlog is growing: the British are currently vaccinating almost three times as many people a day.
In any case, herd immunity on the island seems to be foreseeable. And that’s why the British want to open: The media are celebrating 118 days until “normal life day”.
March 8: Schools open
The first step: Great Britain is getting closer to Germany again.
► On March 8, all high school and university students will return completely – children in secondary schools (and older) should first wear a mask in the classrooms.
► People are allowed to meet another person outside (!).
► Nursing home residents can again receive a regular visitor.
► Otherwise, the appeal continues: stay at home!
In other words: The British have actually been in a harder lockdown than the Germans in the past few weeks. The British easing comes at a time when around a third of the population is at least first vaccinated.
Germany will not be that far on March 8th: With a constant vaccination rate, there are around 6.9 million people (around eight percent).
In a secret meeting, Chancellor Helge Braun (48, CDU) stated that “no openings” are currently possible. The reason: the significantly more contagious virus mutation B1.1.7, first detected in Great Britain, which is spreading more and more in Germany.
There is currently a gentle opening of schools in Germany, from March 1st hairdressers are allowed to open again and from a seven-day incidence of 35 also shops for non-daily needs again.
Chancellor Angela Merkel (66, CDU) spoke during the CDU presidium meeting on Monday of a “legitimate longing for an opening”, as BILD learned according to participants. And the Chancellor brought “four opening steps without the yo-yo effect” into play, as Chancellor Braun explained.
The biggest catch for Germany: The currently relevant seven-day incidence of 35 for further openings is almost unattainable in the coming weeks. The value has stagnated above 50 for days and is currently at 60.5 – experts warn of the start of a third wave.
In plain language: neither a short-term loosening of the lockdown for business nor any further measures based on this are to be expected. So far there have always been new promises to relax and opening talks, but in the end they are only on paper and cannot be reached at all!
March 29: Loose contact restrictions
► The British are loosening contact restrictions: From March 29, up to six people (or two households with more people) should be able to meet again in the UK in public or in gardens.
► Sports: Children and adults are allowed to play sports outside again – swimming pools in the fresh air may also be opened.
► The appeal to “stay at home” is dropped – nevertheless, people should continue to work from home wherever possible and avoid unnecessary trips.
If the mutation continues to spread in Germany and cannot be controlled and the relevant opening incidence remains at 35, it can hardly be expected that there will be easing before Easter (Easter Sunday is April 4).
A look at Great Britain shows that. After the second wave subsided in autumn and reached its plateau on December 5 (seven-day average: 14,400 cases per day), the wave of mutations rolled across the country: the number of infections continued to rise up to January 9 (peak) – at that time there were 59,660 cases per day in the UK. 35 days passed between the plateau and the peak.
If you apply this number to Germany and trust the virologists and epidemiologists, we are currently at the beginning of a third wave. Then we would currently reach the peak of infection on March 30th. From this perspective alone, loosening is illusory.
According to the projections, 9.52 million vaccinations would have been carried out in Germany on March 29. According to a current estimate by the Ministry of Health (available from BILD), around 19 million vaccine doses should have been delivered by this time (March 31).
SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach (58) expects that all those willing to vaccinate from the age group over 80 could be vaccinated at the beginning of April. This group alone includes almost 5.7 million people.
A realistic plan: Since they cannot be inoculated with the AstraZeneca vaccine, the elderly in society must hope for Biontech and Moderna. By March 31, these manufacturers are said to have shipped 12.1 million cans.
Not before April 12th: perspective for gastronomy
And while Germany could still be deeply in lockdown (!) And is considering slow easing due to the vaccinated risk population, Great Britain is picking up the easing pace properly.
► Opening of the retail trade, hairdressers, cosmetics and public buildings (e.g. libraries).
► Pubs, restaurants and pubs that offer places in the fresh air are allowed to reopen.
► Opening of zoos and amusement parks, among others, provided that the hygiene rules are observed.
► Now you can go inside too: fitness studios and swimming pools are allowed to reopen.
► Vacation apartments can also be offered again.
► More relaxed contact restrictions at weddings (up to 15 people) and funerals (30 people).
Not before May 17th: up to 30 people in the fresh air
Before the final end of the Corona measures in Great Britain, the country is taking another big step towards “vaccinated normality”.
► Outside the rough measures are being lifted – up to 30 people should now meet in parks or gardens.
► Six people are also allowed to meet inside buildings (for example apartments) (more if there are only two households).
► The wave of indoor opening: pubs, restaurants, cinemas, hotels and co. Are allowed to open.
► If the number of infections allows, international travel could now be allowed again – in good time for the summer.
► The return of the fans: Up to 10,000 people should again be able to watch Premier League (or similar) games in large football stadiums.
Not until June 21st
The final point: if the openings in Great Britain have worked, nothing stands in the way of ending the last measures: contact restrictions no longer apply, nightclubs can also reopen, large events can take place.
The reason: At the current UK vaccination rate (350,000 people per day), 60 million vaccinations will have been carried out that day.
While the United Kingdom would have returned to normal, Germany would be far behind: At the current German pace, we would have just under 20 million vaccinations! And that means: If we want to be at least up to the British level on June 21, 40 million more would have to be carried out in the remaining 118 days.
That would mean: 338,983 more vaccinations would be needed per day than in the current average, i.e. 464,000 per day.
But there is hope: According to current estimates by the Ministry of Health, the vaccine manufacturers Biontech / Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson (only one vaccination required) and Curevac (both in the EU approval process) should be available by the end of the second quarter (June 30) ) 96.1 million vaccine doses are delivered. This would allow at least 53.1 million people to be fully vaccinated, which would correspond to around 63 percent of the total population and would therefore be within the range of herd immunity (60 to 70 percent).
That means: Germany needs MORE vaccines now, Germany needs MORE trust in the vaccine, and Germany needs MUCH MORE vaccinations per day – and no empty vaccination centers, countless free appointments and people who do not even cancel their appointments.
Otherwise, a sad summer threatens: Israelis, Chinese, Russians, Americans and British travel immunized around the world and enjoy the return to normality while we crouch around at home and are still not allowed to see any people.