Because of the corona pandemic and the increasing number of infections, a mask requirement could be reintroduced in the fall in Germany. What is the planned O-O-Rule?
O-O-Rule: According to a report, the Germans have to adapt to new corona measures for the fall and winter. The German Federal government is considering a new mask requirement from October 2022 until Easter 2023.
What does the O-O-Rule mean?
The O-O-Rule refers to new corona measures that are being discussed which would take effect from “Oktober to Ostern” (German for October to Easter).
The possible O-O-Rule framework:
▶︎ The mask requirement could continue to apply as before in public transport, medical facilities and retirement homes
▶︎ The mask requirement could be reintroduced again in retail and gastronomy.
▶︎ A possible mask requirement extension to schools is still open
Vigilant in summer – new measures in autumn
Despite the “summer wave”, Health Minister Lauterbach sees no reason to panic. However, he advised wearing a mask indoors. At the same time he announced several new measures – including a vaccination campaign.
Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach sees a “summer wave” of corona with high incidence figures. “We don’t have to panic because of the summer wave,” said the SPD politician at the same time. Nevertheless, one must be vigilant, he said at a joint press conference with the Vice President of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), Lars Schaade.
According to Lauterbach, the courses are milder in the omicron variant BA.5, especially in those who have been vaccinated and those who have recovered. But if the number of people infected increases sharply, the number of people affected by Long-Covid will also increase. He recommends wearing a mask indoors voluntarily. It is a request that you protect yourself and others.
The O-O-Rule to replace the expiring Infection Protection Act?
According to Lauterbach, the Infection Protection Act should also be reformed. He is here with Federal Minister of Justice Marco Buschmann in exchange. “Content should be developed before the summer, so it’s clear what’s in store for us before the fall,” he said.
▶︎ The currently applicable rules of the Infection Protection Act on Corona expire on September 23. They only contain a few so-called basic protective measures.
According to a media report, he did not comment specifically on a new, general mask requirement from October. According to media reports, government circles confirmed that a so-called “O-O-Rule” was under discussion.
▶︎ This “October to Easter rule” has so far mainly been known as a “recommendation” but is being seriously discussed. According to the report, the new mask requirement could continue to apply as before in public transport, medical facilities and retirement homes, but also again in retail and gastronomy.
Corona numbers in Germany are rising again
Over the weekend, the Chancellery said that such an extension of the mask requirement would be considered as one of several possible regulations for the upcoming amendment of the Infection Protection Act. However, as agreed in the coalition, the expert report expected at the end of June on the effectiveness and risks of previous corona protection measures will determine the extent to which the O-O-Rule will be implemented in Germany.
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