BERLIN (dpa-AFX) – cheers from the hairdressers, restrained approval from the virologists, anger from the retail sector – the reactions to the lockdown being extended to March 7 and the other new corona resolutions could hardly be more controversial. What is behind this and how should it go on in the economic sectors and with the infection numbers?
What’s going on with the hairdressers now?
A wave of visits to the hairdresser is building up. “Actually, every customer wants to get in touch within the first week,” reports the President of the Central Association of the German Hairdressing Trade, Harald Esser, with a view to the opening date March 1st. For many it will be a question of wellbeing and aesthetics. The reason for opening the hairdresser is that frail people depend on it for hygiene. Berlin’s Governing Mayor Michael Mller (SPD) said in the rbb: “It may not be the most important and urgent issue for many. But those who can no longer look after themselves completely, are no longer quite as mobile, simply need this for their hygiene too Support. ” According to Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU), a “black market” that had grown in lockdown during hairdressing should also be trimmed.
Why the hairdressers – and not also shoemakers or jewelers?
This is what the Erlangen-based infection immunologist Christian Bogdan suggests. Like many other scientists, he finds the restrictions necessary. He says, however, that small retail stores, for example, could open without the risk of a large crowd. Mller, on the other hand, emphasizes: “Everyone can of course justify for himself that he of course has hygiene concepts (…), but we saw in the autumn that in the end it is the abundance of contacts, conversations, opportunities for encounters that then come true again lead to high incidences. “
How should it go on in schools?
Step by step – and country by country. In many countries, kindergarten children and elementary school students can prepare for the end of the time at home from Monday in a week. The reason: School at home is often particularly difficult for small children and their parents. Friends, games and community are especially important. Some experts estimate that smaller children are less likely to be infected with Corona and are also less contagious. Usually the school starts again alternately – classes are divided and alternately attend school. The organization of schools and day-care centers had always been in the hands of the federal states, as provided for in federalism. The sharper the crisis, however, the greater the willingness to act uniformly.
What about the shops, restaurants and pubs?
The trade will remain closed until at least March 7th and will only open again when the incidence of 35 in the countries is reached, i.e. when there are only that many reported new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days. There is still no perspective for gastronomy – because, according to the idea, you don’t normally sit at restaurant tables at a distance from others and don’t wear a mask.
How great is the understanding in these industries?
Your official representatives are angry. The losses run into the billions. Many companies feared for their existence, it is said. The reserves are often long gone, warns the BTE textile trade association. “It’s sheer horror,” says Managing Director Rolf Pangels. The German Trade Association (HDE) warns of massive business closures in city centers.
Is a wave of bankruptcies inevitable in the corona crisis?
Overall not in Germany. According to the Federal Statistical Office, there were 15.9 percent fewer bankruptcies between January and November 2020 than in the same period of the previous year. The reason for this is the exemptions from the obligation to file for bankruptcy in times of crisis. In January, corporate insolvencies fell by 34 percent. The professional association of insolvency administrators does not expect a wave of insolvencies in the first half of the year, even because of the exceptions still in force.
What do virologists think of the lockdown extension?
Most of them consider it necessary and good. Stricter rules would have to remain enforceable for individual regions, says Berit Lange, epidemiologist at the Helmholtz Center for Infection Research (HZI) in Braunschweig. And then when the highly contagious virus mutations spread strongly in a region. Lange: “If the new virus variants increase significantly, you will only see this in the supra-regional data with a certain delay. The question then is: by how much can I mitigate the development?” According to Prime Minister Markus Sder (CSU), the more contagious variant from Great Britain has now taken over in some eastern Bavarian regions.
What exactly is behind the new 35 brand?
Most recently, the number of new infections (incidence) per 100,000 inhabitants fell in seven days – from just under 200 shortly before Christmas to 64 nationwide. The range still extends from 106 in Thringen to 55 or 56 in Rhineland-Palatinate, Berlin and Germany Baden-Wrttemberg. The long stated goal is to get under 50 nationwide. Then health authorities should be able to sprinkle infection chains again. This threshold was previously only intended as an alarm mark. The federal government and the federal states have now agreed the lower threshold for opening steps: Stable at most 35 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days, based on the respective federal state. And, according to Merkel, stability means: at least three days.
When could the 35 incidence be reached?
Perhaps as early as the beginning of March. “Our most optimistic predictions show that we can reach the 50s incidence in two weeks,” says mathematician Maria Barbarossa from the Frankfurt Institute for Advanced Studies. By March 7, the numbers could move in the direction of 35 – provided the lockdown remains consistent until then. However, there are also uncertainties with regard to the newly emerging virus variants. For example, the opening of schools means that more people are using local public transport, especially in cities./bw/DP/fba