Bavaria and Saxony see highest number of Covid-19 vaccination centre offences

Since jabs against the coronavirus began, there have been attacks on Covid-19 vaccination centres or disruptions to vaccination campaigns in all of Germany's 16 federal states bar Hamburg. However, Saxony and Bavaria have been particularly badly affected.

Bavaria and Saxony see highest number of Covid-19 vaccination centre offences

Across Germany, there have been at least 190 incidents connected with vaccinations against Covid-19 that were relevant to the police, according to a survey of Germany’s ministries, state criminal police offices and an association of statutory health insurance physicians carried out by the Evangelical Press Service (epd).

The northern state of Hamburg, however, reported that nothing “serious” was known in connection to offences against vaccination centres or campaigns.

In Schleswig-Holstein, meanwhile, the state prosector was currently investigating two threats made to school staff in connection with vaccination campaigns: a threat of violence to a school teacher in one school and an incitement to murder against the school management and teaching staff of another in a Telegram app chat group.

Several states, including Bavaria and Hessen, also saw disruption to their vaccination campaigns during the Germany-wide vaccination campaign week from September 13th to 19th. 

But Bavaria and Saxony saw the largest number of cases. According to its interior ministry, Bavaria has seen 56 vaccination centre-related criminal acts since December 2020 while Saxony has had 54 this year alone.

Germany-wide, the offences involved threats, insults, physical attacks and even an arson attack at a centre in Saxony, although they mostly consisted of damage to property, especially graffiti.

In Saarland, for example, the lettering of the word “Impfzentrum” (vaccination centre) was turned into “Giftzentrum” (poison centre), although this was the state’s only case. Bremen also only had one case.

This is perhaps not surprising as Bremen and Saarland top Germany’s states in terms of the number of vaccinations administered.

Graffiti reading “Giftspritze” (lethal injection) near a vaccination centre in Treptow, Berlin. picture alliance/dpa | Christophe Gateau

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Are people who’ve had the single J&J jab no longer fully vaccinated in Germany?

Germany's federal vaccine agency says that people who've had one dose of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine should no longer be classed as being fully vaccinated.

People queue for a vaccination in Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt.
People queue for a vaccination in Quedlinburg, Saxony-Anhalt. Photo: picture alliance/dpa/dpa-Zentralbild | Matthias Bein

People who’ve had J&J, sometimes known as Janssen, used to have full vaccination status after a single dose of the vaccine. 

Since January 15th, however, a single dose of J&J should no longer count as full vaccination, according to the Paul Ehrlich Institute (PEI), the country’s vaccine authority. 

In autumn last year the German government began recommending a second mRNA jab for people who’d had J&J – which many people thought was the booster vaccination. 

However, according to the PEI’s update on proof of vaccination within the Covid Protective Measures Exemption Ordinance and the Coronavirus Entry Ordinance, the second shot is needed to complete ‘basic immunisation’.

It is unclear at this stage if it means that people returning or coming to Germany from abroad with only one shot of J&J will be counted as partially vaccinated and therefore need to present tests or face other forms of barriers to entry. 

We are also looking into what this means for the various health pass rules in states, such as the 3G rules for transport. 

The Deutsches Ärzteblatt, a German-language medical magazine, said: “Special rules according to which one dose was recognised as a complete vaccination with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine are no longer applicable.”

The Local has contacted the German Health Ministry for clarification on what this means for those affected. 

According to the latest government figures, 5.3 million doses of Johnson & Johnson have been given out in Germany so far in the vaccination campaign. 

The news will come as a shock to those who don’t know that they need another jab, or haven’t got round to getting their second vaccine yet. 

All other jabs – such as BioNTech/Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca – already require two jabs. 

People in Germany are seen as fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose. 

What about boosters?

As The Local Germany has been reporting, the German government said in December that people who’ve had J&J need a third shot three months after their second dose to be considered boosted.

A German Health Ministry spokesman told us last week that due to more vaccination breakthrough infections affecting people who’ve had the J&J vaccine, extra protection was needed.

“Therefore, after completion of the basic immunisation as recommended by STIKO, i.e. after administration of two vaccine doses (preferably 1x J&J + 1x mRNA), following the current recommendation of the STIKO, a further booster vaccination can subsequently be administered with a minimum interval of a further three months, as with the other approved Covid-19 vaccines,” the Health Ministry spokesman said. 

However, there has been much confusion on this front because some states have been accepting J&J and another shot as being boosted, while others haven’t.


It is unclear if the new regulation will mean that states will all have to only accept J&J and two shots as being boosted. 

North Rhine-Westphalia, for instance, updated its regulations on January 16th and now requires that people who’ve had J&J and one shot have another jab to be boosted. 

Having a booster shot in Germany means that you do not have to take a Covid-19 test if you’re entering a venue, such as a restaurant or cafe, under the 2G-plus rules.

The Paul Ehrlich Institute said that proof of complete vaccination protection against Covid takes into account “the current state of medical science”.