Rules to slow down the coronavirus epidemic in Berlin will be tightened from the end of the week because the spread of the virus in several inner districts has accelerated above the limit of what is considered to be highly dangerous.
From Saturday to the end of October, the rule is that all shops and restaurants must be closed from 11 pm to 6 am. On-call pharmacies are not subject to the tightening. Gas stations may also be open 24 hours a day, but may not sell alcohol from 11pm until 6am. During this period, a maximum of five people may be present in a public area and a maximum of twenty-five people in a private meeting.
“The party is over,” Dilek Kalayci, a health board member of the leadership of the German capital’s world-famous nightlife, told Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB), a regional public service media company, on Wednesday, pointing out that in recent weeks it has become more popular in nightclubs. a new type of coronavirus (SARS-Cov-2).
The Social Democratic politician (SPD) said that in the first wave of the epidemic, Berliners had consistently adhered to the rules to slow down the epidemic, “but now we are seeing a decline in discipline, especially among young people who say that it is not so terrible. the virus, ”he said.
He stressed that while undisciplined people breaking through the rules are in the minority, “but in times of epidemic, a minority can be very, very dangerous if they are very mobile”.
For weeks, the federal government has been pushing for measures to curb the epidemic under the leadership of the provincial capital, and has offered the Army (Bundeswehr) to help local health agencies in contact research to break the chains of infection. The SPD, the Left Left (Die Linke) and the coalition of the Greens, to the left of the party, rejected the offer and matured the new epidemic-slowing rules through weeks of debate. The protracted decision was criticized by the Berlin city council across the country and banned entry from epidemiologically risky districts in Berlin in several provinces.
The Robert Koch National Institute of Public Health (RKI) classifies four districts (Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, Mitte, Neukölln, Tempelhof-Schöneberg,) as high-risk areas. The worst situation is in Neukölln, where 78.9 people have been identified per 100,000 inhabitants in the last seven days.
By agreement between the federal government and the provincial governments, additional disease control measures should be taken if the number of coronavirus infections registered in the last seven days exceeds fifty per one hundred thousand inhabitants.
According to RKI data on Wednesday, 2,828 new infections have been registered nationwide in the last 24 hours, bringing the number of test-confirmed cases to 306,086. The number of deaths associated with the disease caused by the virus (Covid-19) increased by 16 to 9,562. The seven-day moving average of the virus’s so-called reproduction rate (R) is 1.08, which means that every 100 infected people pass the virus to an average of another 108 people.
(Cover image: Tobias Schwarz / AFP)