German Health Minister rules out Covid lockdown for vaccinated

German Health Minister rules out Covid lockdown for vaccinated
A man passes a closed bar in Berlin-Friedrichshain in May 2021. Politicians are promising that vaccinated people won't see the same severe lockdowns as before. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Christophe Gateau
Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) has promised people who are vaccinated against or recovered from Covid that they won't see a repeat of the harsh lockdowns they experienced earlier in the pandemic.

“There will be no such restriction for vaccinated and recovered people,” the minister told the German Editorial Network (RND) on Thursday. “That is the legal situation today.”

His comments echo those of Chancellor Merkel, who said last week that people who get their Covid shots will continue to have their rights assured, even if the infections rate rise in autumn. 

“As long as the vaccines are working, we cannot simply say a vaccinated person is not allowed […] to exercise their rights as a citizen,” she told reporters at a press conference on August 10th, following a meeting between her and the state leaders.

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However, Spahn believes that the unvaccinated could find themselves unable to visit restaurants, hotels are other services as private owners start to break away from state regulation and enforce their own entry rules. 

Unofficial ‘2G’ 

With the new ‘3G’ health pass rules coming into force, people with proof of vaccination (the ‘geimpft‘), recovery (the ‘genesen‘) or those with a negative test (the ‘getestet‘) can continue to visit the public spaces like bars and restaurants that were closed for months during Germany’s harshest lockdowns. 

The move is intended to ensure that businesses can remain even when infection rates are higher, and also act as an incentive for people to get vaccinated as opposed to facing regular tests.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about Germany’s new ‘3G’ Covid health pass rules

But Spahn assumes that private event organisers, hotels or restaurants will increasingly decide not to admit unvaccinated people – even if they can present a negative Covid test.

“2G [entry only for the vaccinated or recovered] will come in many areas without state intervention, and that is because organisers and restaurateurs will make use of their rights as business owners,” he told RND.

Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) believes the 2G rule will be introduced in some venues without state intervention. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/Reuters/Pool | Michele Tantussi

The transition to 2G has already been made by FC Cologne, who plan to bar unvaccinated people from attending Bundesliga football matches at their stadium throughout the season.

Some hotels are also looking at this model. 

Meanwhile, FC Dortmund has opted to allow just a small proportion of unvaccinated fans into their home stadium, reserving the vast majority of the 25,000 seats for vaccinated or recovered people. 

READ ALSO: EXPLAINED: The Covid rules for attending German football matches

Spahn is said to be keen on the idea of introducing a state-led ‘2G’ rule if the 7-day incidence of Covid infections starts to spike in the colder months.

Until now, however, politicians have made little sign that they plan to introduce this measure formally, although Bavarian state premier Markus Söder has voiced his support for it. 

Instead, they chose to focus their discussions on the less controversial ‘3G’ rule and the scrapping of free antigen tests at the meeting between Merkel and the state premiers on August 10th. 

Member comments

  1. Its not a vaccine if you can still catch the virus and spread it. Funny how most countries are all singing from the same hymn sheet and cases base on not fit for purpose pcr tests at above 28 cycles. Real vaccines stop you from getting the disease and most cover you for life.

    1. Actually, it IS a vaccine. Most people assume that a vaccine is or should be a CURE. It is not. A vaccine increases a persons immunity against an illness. NO vaccine is 100% effective. Research shows that vaccines are typically effective against whatever they were created for, i.e. polio vaccines of the past. Very effective, but not a cure. Having said that, the incidence of polio was almost completely eradicated due to vaccines… so even though it is not a cure, history shows that the vaccine was extremely helpful. So, with regard to the COVID vaccine, it is not 100% effective, but it should lower the risk of becoming seriously ill, as it has already proven. We will see how it holds up to the different variants that are emerging. I work as a vaccinated healthcare provider, and I also have family members who have become seriously ill with COVID who were not vaccinated, so I certainly see all sides.

  2. “Spahn assumes that private event organisers, hotels or restaurants will increasingly decide not to admit unvaccinated people” Spahn is a dumbass that doesn’t understand basics of running a business. Glad to be moving back to Denmark from October. Germany has turned into a first-class shithole during this crisis.

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