Corona vaccination for Bundeswehr soldiers? | Free press

Soldiers must tolerate vaccination against communicable diseases. Whether and how this applies to the corona vaccination is checked. The procedure for so-called “tolerated vaccinations” is well established – and has so far been carried out without much fuss.

Berlin (dpa) – The Bundeswehr is about to make a decision to expand mandatory vaccinations to include protection against the coronavirus. An investigation is underway, a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense of the German news agency confirms.

Currently, “a decision is being prepared whether and when the vaccination against Sars-CoV-2 can be included in the portfolio of vaccinations for which the Bundeswehr is tolerant”. Spiegel reported in December that the general practitioner had recommended the Bundeswehr to include vaccination against the virus in the so-called basic vaccination protection for all soldiers.

From a military point of view, vaccination protection has proven its worth, especially when it comes to immunizing contingents for foreign missions. “Due to the special circumstances of the close coexistence in the operations and also in collective accommodation in Germany, soldiers per se are exposed to a relatively higher risk of infection than other populations,” said the spokesman. “Therefore, vaccinations in the Bundeswehr are always aimed at protecting the community and the individual at the same time, and the obligation to tolerate is an important tool to achieve the necessary vaccination coverage for occupational immunity.”

The ministry also points out that the new vaccines against Sars-CoV-2 in Germany were quickly approved, but no less thorough than other vaccines that were introduced. “To achieve this level of security, the emergency approval procedure in Germany was deliberately avoided. The Sars-CoV-2 vaccines meet all requirements for the safety and effectiveness of medicines. “The federal government excludes a general corona vaccination obligation as well as a special obligation for nurses or healthcare professionals.

In the Bundeswehr, the obligation to tolerate vaccination and preventive measures was introduced a few years ago. The proportionality principle must be respected, especially in view of possible side effects of vaccination. In case of serious complications, entitlements arise on the basis of pension rights. However, if vaccinations are refused, there is a risk of “legal consequences”.

The Soldiers Act forms the basis for this. “The soldier only has to tolerate medical measures against his will if they are 1. to prevent or control communicable diseases or 2. to determine his fitness for service or benefit,” says Paragraph 17a. And: «If the soldier refuses a reasonable medical measure and as a result his ability to work or work is impaired, he may be denied care. A medical measure involving significant risk to life or health is unreasonable. “

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