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Chancellery chief Helge Braun announces more tests

Rapid tests, even at events, can form the basis for easing the corona measures. Chancellery chief Helge Braun wants to continue to exercise caution.

Chancellery chief Helge Braun has announced a two-pronged test strategy to secure opening steps. On the one hand, it is about discovering infections in the early phase – for example by offering everyone to be tested once or twice a week, says Braun on ARD. On the other hand, it is about daily tests, for example at larger events, in order to minimize the risk of infection there. The Bund-Länder executive round is to decide on March 3rd about the use of the free rapid tests announced by the federal government. The federal government wants to pay for this in the future because previously only individual municipalities such as Tübingen had offered free rapid tests for their citizens.

Braun also indicated that the federal and state governments could decide on new opening steps in the executive round. One will discuss in the next few days how one can make the additional contacts triggered by it safe by testing much more and easier, said the CDU politician in the ARD. “Each opening has to be contrasted with something that stabilizes the number of infections,” adds Braun.

Laschet is committed to uniform solutions

CDU party leader Armin Laschet meanwhile does not want to make any clear statements in his party on questions of the corona pandemic. “The fight against corona is not a party-political question. And I also warn against making it a question between the CDU and the SPD, between the Greens and the FDP,” said the North Rhine-Westphalian head of government on the ZDF program “Berlin direkt” on Sunday evening. “The federal government is on one side. The 16 countries, where almost every democratic party is involved in some form of coalition, are struggling to find the right solutions. I will maintain that: it will not be party-politicized,” he said.

“Everyone is struggling to find the right way,” said Laschet. Different measures had been taken in different countries with different governments. He would rather fight for nationwide solutions to be found and for the blanket closing that had determined the last few weeks to be changed. Laschet spoke of a “differentiated, cautious, harmonizing opening” that should be achieved in the 16 countries. On Wednesday, Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the Prime Ministers discussed how to proceed in the pandemic.

According to the chairman of the European Ethics Council, Christiane Woopen, the expert council of the North Rhine-Westphalian state government is promoting only opening lockdown areas that present additional protection concepts. These included testing and vaccination strategies. “If it is only opened now, the third wave will necessarily come,” she says on ARD. Woopen, who is a member of the North Rhine-Westphalian Expert Council, criticizes the fact that the 800 million rapid tests mentioned by the Ministry of Health are nowhere near enough for a comprehensive test strategy.

Lauterbach proposes a new vaccination and test strategy

According to a “Spiegel” report, the SPD health politician Karl Lauterbach suggests that the second vaccination dose only be administered at the end of the permitted range in order to be able to vaccinate more people more quickly. In addition, he advocates a test program according to which all people in schools and in companies should take a quick test at least once a week with the help of trained staff.

Anyone who has a negative result should then be allowed to go into stores for a day with the proof. This allows the shops to open promptly, of course still requiring a mask – at the same time, however, you prevent infections, “Spiegel” quotes Lauterbach.

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