Germans who have not been vaccinated against the CCP virus will no longer be entitled to quarantine compensation payments and free COVID-19 tests starting in November, authorities announced on Wednesday.
Health Minister Jens Spahn said after meeting with the country’s 16 federal states on Sept. 22 that the policy will go into effect on Nov. 1 in the country’s latest effort to get more people to take the shot.
Critics of the policy have said such rules would be equivalent to a mandate for COVID-19 vaccinations because many employees cannot afford to stay at home without pay.
Spahn said that getting vaccinated will remain a “personal decision” in Germany as he responded to the criticism, German news outlet The Local reported. Although that decision will now also come with “the responsibility to bear the financial consequences,” he added.
“Some people will say this means pressure for the unvaccinated. I think we have to look at it the other way around—it is also a question of fairness,” Spahn said. “Those who protect themselves and others via a vaccination can rightly ask why we should have to pay somebody who ended up in quarantine after a holiday in a risk area.”
In addition, COVID-19 tests, which are required to enter restaurants, theaters, among some other places, will no longer be free of charge starting on Oct. 11. Only those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons will have access to free tests.
The rules will affect people who test positive for the virus and those returning from trips to countries designated “high risk” for the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, which now includes Britain, Turkey, and parts of France, among others.
Unvaccinated travelers from such countries are required to quarantine for at least five days. Those who have been vaccinated or have recently recovered are not required to do so.
Germany, which has one of the lowest recorded death rates per capita in Europe, has previously rejected compulsory vaccinations, saying such a law would undermine public trust, but authorities have been taking measures that make it increasingly inconvenient to be unvaccinated.
Earlier this month, health authorities rejected a suggestion that would give employers the right to find out whether their employees are vaccinated against the CCP virus, the reason for the rejection was due to such data being very personal.
“Health information of employees is particularly sensitive, and the question of a vaccination against coronavirus is part of that,” Christine Lambrecht, the minister of justice and consumer protection, told the Funke media group.
Germany has fully vaccinated 63.5 percent of its total population, official data shows. The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) health agency previously said they are seeking 85 percent of those aged 12 to 59 to get vaccinated, as well as 90 percent of all those above the age of 60 in order to reach herd immunity.
Reuters contributed to this report.
From NTD News