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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

Austria tightens vaccination rules as COVID-19 cases have doubled in five days


As the government strives to control the soaring Covid-19 cases, Austria will mandate entry into restaurants, bars and entertainment venues for full vaccination.

The government stated that unless extended by booster injections, full immunity will also expire 9 months instead of 12 months after the second vaccination.

These rules — which will also recognize those who have recovered from a confirmed coronavirus infection — will take effect on Monday.

So far, the use of the European Union’s Green Pass can be used to enter hotel premises, which may include evidence of a recent negative PCR test.

“None of us have a crystal ball… but if we want to prevent another lockdown, we must act now,” Chancellor Alexander Schellenberg said at a press conference on Friday night, announcing the tightening of the rules. .

Consumer services that involve close personal contact, such as hairdressing and beauty care, and any organized gathering of more than 25 people, require evidence of full vaccination or recovery.

In just five days, the number of new infections per day in Austria has doubled-4,523 new cases were reported in the country on Monday and 9,388 on Friday.

The rapid increase in the number of cases is expected to soon exceed the highest daily number of infections recorded in Austria in mid-November last year-9,586 people. In response, the government has adopted one of the strictest and longest-lasting lockdown measures in Europe.

The death toll has also increased in recent weeks. Although it has done so at a less alarming rate compared to previous waves, Austria’s relatively low vaccination rate means it has attracted the attention of public health authorities.

On Thursday, the health authorities of Lower Austria stated that they would cancel all non-emergency surgical operations due to a shortage of beds.

One-third of Austrians have not yet received the first dose of vaccine.

The country’s skepticism is relatively high. Earlier this year, the new party of vaccine skeptics, MFG, won 6.4% of the vote and won seats in one of the country’s most important regional elections. Subsequent public opinion surveys indicated that MFG’s results will be replicated nationwide.

Since the summer, the vaccination rate in Austria has dropped significantly. Based on the 7-day average in the last week of October, only 12,000 doses of vaccine per day were given, compared to more than 90,000 doses in June.

The leader of the Austrian populist right-wing Liberal Party, Herbert Kickl, called these measures “corona retaliation” in response to the new vaccine request on Friday and condemned the conservative-led Austrian government for the pandemic. Period records.

He said: “It is puzzling why the new corona test is worse than the vaccine vaccinated a few months ago.” “This clearly shows that the government has only one goal… Or but.”



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