Rewards and posters: Debate over more incentives for corona vaccination | free press

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Berlin (dpa) – Given the rapidly increasing corona infections, there are even more suggestions to boost vaccination coverage. Left party leader Dietmar Bartsch spoke out in favor of a vaccination premium of 50 euros.

The head of the CSU in the Bundestag, Alexander Dobrindt, proposed vaccination stations for holiday returnees directly at airports or train stations. Major retail chains want poster campaigns under the motto “Living instead of lockdown. Get vaccinated.” Start. According to the federal Minister of Health Jens Spahn (CDU), there were almost 100,000 first vaccinations on Thursday. “That is still too little to get through the autumn and winter well protected,” he wrote on Twitter on Friday.

Incidence continues to rise

According to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the number of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants rose further in seven days to 20.4 – after 19.4 the day before and at the latest 4.9 on July 6. Despite vaccinations, this seven-day incidence will increase faster and earlier than in the summer of 2020. Virtually all new infections are now due to the more contagious variant of the Delta virus: 97 percent.

Health authorities could no longer understand all the chains of infection, it said. Figures on hospitalized patients and treatments in intensive care units are still at a “low level”.

Bund-Länder meeting next week

Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the prime ministers want to discuss measures against a new major corona wave on Tuesday. In addition to incentives for more vaccinations, there are also restrictions that could only apply to unvaccinated people – a negative test may not be enough.

Saxon Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) spoke out for “that with increasing infections and increasing occupancy in hospitals, major sporting and cultural events can only be attended by vaccinated and recovered people”. “There should be no new national lockdown.” Vaccinations are the best way to prevent this.

Discussion about vaccination incentives

There is talk of new vaccination incentives. Leftist faction leader Bartsch told the Funke media group papers: “All citizens who have been vaccinated can get a 50 euro city center voucher for restaurants or shops.” However, they are expressly not to be exchanged via online trading. “That would be an economic stimulus package of three to four billion euros for the inner cities that have suffered badly from Corona.”

The Federal Ministry of Health expressed its unwillingness to ideas for monetary rewards. “The main incentive for vaccination should be for everyone to protect themselves and others,” it said when requested. There are more and more stimuli in everyday life, for example when travelling. “The decisive factor now is the provision of vaccinations at a low level.”

Poster campaign in stores

Posters in many shop windows and at the cash registers should also draw attention to vaccinations. Supermarkets, department stores, clothing and electronics stores with more than 40 million customer contacts every day are participating in the campaign. This is how you reach people who have not yet been vaccinated despite an offer, explains the German trade association.

Dobrindt, leader of the regional CSU group, told Funke newspapers, “At airports and train stations, unvaccinated travelers should get a vaccination offer quickly and easily.” 51.8 million people or 62.2 percent of the population have now been vaccinated at least once. Nearly 45 million people or 54.1 percent now have the vaccinations they need for complete protection.

Extension of the epidemic situation?

Dobrindt reacted cautiously to statements by Vice-Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) that the Bundestag should extend the initially existing “epidemic of national scope” until the end of September. Among other things, it enables the federal government to directly issue regulations, for example on vaccination and testing. “There is no automatic mechanism for an extension,” said Dobrindt of the German news agency. “We will examine the contamination process in the coming weeks and then decide on the appropriate measures in the Bundestag.”

Upon request, the Federal Ministry of Health stated that only the Bundestag would decide on a possible extension of the epidemic situation. Schemes for vaccination and testing, for admission and for the register of intensive care beds have already been expanded by parliament on the proposal of the health department.