Coronavirus in Germany. New Covid-19 rules. On Thursday Germany’s government implemented rules to come into force between October 1st and April 7th, 2023.
In the expectation of rise in cases in the autumn and winter, Germany’s parliament is expected to tighten its rules both at the national level–and leave Germany’s 16 states to their own authority.
Currently, Germany has a seven-day incidence of 217.2 cases per 100,000 people – a significant dip from a month ago when figures stood at 389.3 a month ago.
Here’s what we know so far.
Which rules apply nationwide?
FFP2 mask requirements are to be enforced in hospitals, nursing homes and doctors’ offices all over Germany. This will also apply in long distance trains for everyone 14 and older.
Before accessing nursing homes and hospitals, you will need to present a negative test.
Appointment of special representatives at care homes to administer vaccines, hygiene and therapies for patients, for example with the anti-viral drug Paxlovid.
The mask requirement is set to be scraped in airplanes all together.
What rules to expect in German states?
Beginning October 1st, each of Germany’s 16 states will determine their own rules including the requirement to don a face mask on local bus and train services.
They will decide on whether masks are to be made compulsory again in public areas such as stores and restaurants, with an exception to be made for those who present a negative Covid-19 test.
States could remove mandatory tests in schools and Kitas (daycare centers).
According to the draft legislation from Germany’s grand coalition, introduction of masks again in primary and secondary schools, but only from the fifth grade onwards and only to the extent that this is “necessary to maintain a regular classroom presence.”
States will be able to impose the obligation to wear masks at outdoor events, should Covid-19 figures rise to a more critical level.
The new Covid-19 rules were met with mixed options, as Bavaria’s prime minister Markus Söder spoke out in favour of abolishing the mandatory mask requirement for long-distance travel.