Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach (SPD) has warned against a return of the delta variant of the corona virus and announced the procurement of different vaccines. “The pandemic is not over yet. An omicron wave in autumn is likely. But even the more dangerous delta variant could come back,” Lauterbach told the Düsseldorf “Rheinische Post”, referring to a corresponding study from Israel.
Germany must adapt to both scenarios, he said. “We need vaccines against both variants. That will be very expensive. But another missed autumn would be unaffordable for the economy.” The federal government expects a vaccine against the omicron variant in September.
Lauterbach made serious allegations against the Union in this regard. “Compulsory vaccination would have made everything easier. The Union is to blame if the vaccination gap leads to preventable deaths and restrictions,” he said. “Without their party tactical blockade, vaccination would have been compulsory.”
The German Association of Towns and Municipalities called on the federal and state governments to make preparations for a new corona wave. The vaccination options must be maintained, said general manager Gerd Landsberg to the newspapers of the Funke media group.
It does not make sense to operate largely empty vaccination centers on a large scale, said Landsberg. “But the planning of when and under what circumstances additional vaccination options have to be created again is now necessary.” At the same time, Landsberg called for a discussion about “whether the now reduced possibilities of the Infection Protection Act are actually sufficient”.
Landsberg expressed skepticism about abolishing the mask requirement on buses and trains. Many people have become accustomed to wearing masks, he said. “We will probably have to step up these precautionary measures in autumn, especially since the associated protection is not only effective against corona infection, but also against flu viruses.”