Millions of anti-vaccination people push Germany into a Covid-19 slump

Millions of anti-vaccination people push Germany into a Covid-19 slump 2

Millions of anti-vaccination people push Germany into a Covid-19 slump

Giessen University Hospital, one of Germany’s leading lung disease examination and treatment facilities, is operating at full capacity, as the number of Covid-19 patients recently tripled.

`I asked them why not vaccinate?`, Dr. Susanne Herold, head of the infectious disease department, said after a briefing on November 11.

A vaccination center in Munich on November 11.

The anti-vaxxers that Dr. Herold criticized are considered the main cause of Germany’s fourth wave of Covid-19 with thousands of new infections every day, the highest level since the outbreak.

For Germany, this is an unexpected plunge.

But now, a combination of many factors has prompted a sudden increase in infections, such as low winter temperatures, slow government deployment of enhanced vaccines or a clear increase in infections in Eastern countries.

However, virologists and disease experts say it is the unvaccinated people who are the biggest cause of the fourth wave of infections that is weighing on hospital systems across the country.

`That’s because vaccination rates are low. We haven’t really done what’s needed,` Dr. Herold said.

`Germany’s vaccination rate is still below 70%,` she said.

Germany’s vaccine coverage is still significantly higher than many Central and Eastern European countries, where the death toll from Covid-19 is skyrocketing.

However, with about a third of the population, or more than 27 million people, not yet vaccinated with the full regimen, Germany’s vaccination rate is among the lowest in Western Europe.

`What we are experiencing is above all an epidemic of unvaccinated people,` German Health Minister Jens Spahn said early last month.

The number of infections is rising sharply in some areas of Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg, two wealthy southern states where a noisy protest movement against anti-epidemic measures, known as `Querdenker` or `Querdenker`, has taken place.

`We are facing two viruses, nCoV and this poison, which is spreading,` Baravia Governor Markus Söder said in a recent televised debate, referring to false information.

Klaus-Peter Hanke was one of the first people to experience the toxicity of the anti-vaccination wave.

Nearly 50% of Pirna residents refused to be vaccinated, making Saxony the state with the lowest vaccination rate in Germany and the highest number of new infections per capita.

`The level of vaccination readiness here is very low,` Mayor Hanke said in an interview.

`The Covid-19 treatment area at the hospital is running out of beds. About 90% of the patients there are not vaccinated,` he said.

Millions of anti-vaccination people push Germany into a Covid-19 slump

A protest against the German government’s epidemic prevention measures in Leipzig city, Saxony state, last week.

Meanwhile, some restaurants in town still display signs ready to welcome `everyone`, including unvaccinated customers.

`This measure is quite tough. But we have no other way to make people change their behavior,` Hanke emphasized.

At least, it’s effective.

Several other German states are also implementing similar regulations, introducing stricter rules on masks and requiring people to present proof of vaccination or nCoV infection when visiting many locations, instead of

But according to Sandra Ciesek, director of the Institute of Medical Virology at Frankfurt University Hospital, these actions may not be enough in the current epidemic context.

Ciesek and a number of famous German scientists last week called on the government to apply other strong measures, such as a partial blockade of unvaccinated areas or even a short-term blockade nationwide if necessary.

The lack of `leading` leadership at the national level at a time when the number of new daily infections is skyrocketing past 50,000 makes the situation even more serious.

Since German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative party lost the national election in September, she has only been acting as interim government leader, while her potential successor, Olaf Scholz, is embroiled in political turmoil.

`Where is Angela Merkel?`, `Where is Scholz?`, Der Spiegel asked in a recent article.

This is also the question that many virologists across the country are asking, with concerns that the lack of political leadership is wasting precious time and the cost could be people’s lives.

`There is no centralized power and real responsibility. The country is lacking leadership,` said Michael Meyer-Hermann, head of the Department of Systems Immunology at the Helmholtz Center for Infection Research and member of the private expert panel.

After the number of new daily infections hit a record high on November 3, reaching 33,949 cases, German virologists sounded a warning message.

`For me, now is an important time,` said Professor Meyer-Hermann.

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