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EXPLAINED: Germany's planned changes to Covid vaccination status

The Local
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EXPLAINED: Germany's planned changes to Covid vaccination status
A person being vaccinated against Covid-19 in Stuttgart. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Bernd Weißbrod

From October, there will be changes to who is considered fully vaccinated in Germany. Here's what to look out for.


People in Germany have to pay close attention to their current vaccination status because of an important change coming up. 

From October 1st 2022, those who have not received their Covid booster vaccination will be considered unvaccinated. 

A spokesman from the German Health Ministry recently told The Local: "People who have a double vaccination will generally no longer be considered fully vaccinated from October 1st 2022, according to the innovations in infection protection.

"Accordingly, the EU Covid digital vaccination certificate will be shown as invalid for domestic use when checked with the CovPassCheck app."


However, there are slightly different rules for entry into Germany. 

The Health Ministry spokesman said: "In the context of entry, according to European law, an EU digital Covid vaccination certificate will continue to be valid after October 1st 2022 for a double vaccination if no more than 270 days have passed since the last vaccination dose, or indefinitely for persons under 18."

READ ALSO: EU extends Covid travel certificates until 2023

Currently, there are no entry rules to get into Germany. We've asked the Health Ministry if this is set to change from October. We'll update you when we have more information. 

Note that in Germany, the recovered status is believed to offer a similar level of immunity to a vaccination. So people who have recovered from a Covid infection will only need two jabs to be considered "fully immunised" from October.

What are the different combinations?

Here's a look at what applies at the moment, and what the rules will be from October 1st. 

Since March 19th 2022, the Infection Protection Act has specified the conditions that have to be met to be considered fully vaccinated against Covid-19 in Germany.

Up until September 30th 2022, these scenarios count as complete vaccination protection:

- Three vaccination shots (basic immunisation plus booster)

- Two single vaccinations (two weeks must have passed after the last dose)

- One vaccination PLUS

a positive antibody test before the first vaccination OR

a PCR-proven SARS-CoV-2 infection before first vaccination OR

a SARS-CoV-2 infection detected by PCR test after first vaccination; 28 days must have passed since testing.


After October 1st 2022 you are fully vaccinated in Germany in these scenarios:

- After three vaccination shots (the last jab must have taken place at least three months after the second single vaccination),

- Two single vaccinations PLUS

a positive antibody test before the first vaccination OR

a PCR-proven SARS-CoV-2 infection before the second vaccination OR

a PCR-tested SARS-CoV-2 infection after the second vaccination (28 days must have elapsed since testing).

Vaccinations must have been administered with vaccines licensed by the European Union or vaccines approved abroad that have the same formula as one of the EU-approved vaccines. 

Germany's Standing Committee on Vaccination (STIKO) recommends that everyone over the age of 12 who has had two jabs should get a booster vaccination. Children aged 5 to 11 with pre-existing diseases should also receive a booster vaccination after basic immunisation, according to STIKO.


It is recommended in Germany that some people receive a fourth jab - or a second booster shot. However, currently this is only a recommendation for risk groups, such as the elderly. However, is it possible for others to get it if they talk to their doctor. 

Up until September 28th, 76.3 percent of the German population had been given two shots, and 62.2 percent had received one or two booster vaccinations. 

Up-to-date information on Covid-19 vaccines and the regulations around it is available on the Germany Health Ministry site (in German). Talk to your GP if you have any questions about Covid vaccines in Germany. 

READ ALSO: Where and how people can get the new Omicron vaccine in Germany

Why is it important to know vaccination status?

It's a good idea to keep track of when your last jab was.

At the moment, Germany has no plans to bring in the so-called 3G or 2G rules we saw last winter, which meant you had to show Covid or vaccination status to enter indoor public places. 

However, states can bring in tougher rules on wearing masks in indoor places, and in some cases showing proof of recent vaccination will mean a person doesn't have to wear a mask. 

READ ALSO: Germany’s new Covid-19 rules from October


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