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Health Minister Spahn, Chancellor Merkel: React, warn, recommend Michael Kappeler / DPA
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Companies, schools, major events: all facilities where many people meet must be closed. Otherwise there will be a health and economic meltdown.

If Germany were a nuclear power plant, a few red lights would be flashing frantically in the control center. An accident that threatens to meltdown. The operating company would shut down the power plant and everyone would find the decision right.

Germany is not a power plant, but the accident is there: Sars-CoV-2 has the potential to kill and trigger the economic meltdown. So it would be right to switch off now. It is better to switch to pause mode for a few weeks than to let the virus drive you towards collapse.


Of course, a state is more complex than a power plant and the consequences of a shutdown, a social shutdown, would be catastrophic. Companies would be forced into bankruptcy, the economy would plummet, and the private restrictions would be enormous. The economy could at least be stabilized with money from the state. But what happens epidemiologically, if no action is taken now, is revealed by a view over the Alps: a catastrophe of a completely different magnitude.

Ten days ago, the situation in Italy was about the same as it is in Germany at the moment, numerous cases, but the public life continued little. Many hospitals are now completely overloaded. Doctors will soon have to decide who gets help and who they let die. You can no longer take care of everyone.

It is up to politicians to prevent such emergencies. Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday that “the necessary” would be done in Germany. This statement can be checked soon. Because if the number of newly infected people does not decrease in a few days, we know that what has to be done has obviously not been done. But we shouldn’t wait that long.


Biological facts are currently delaying decision making. Today’s number of infected people only reflects how the virus has spread over the past week. How the pathogen is currently raging, whether the isolated school closings, the ordered and self-imposed quarantines, increased hand hygiene and cancellations of major events will be of any use, can only be judged in a few days based on the number of new infections. This is the average time between infection and the onset of the disease. In addition, there are the days until the official diagnosis.


At least at the moment Germany is not doing badly. A drastic procedure is necessary to keep it that way and to reduce the number of people newly infected every day. Companies, schools, universities, all facilities in which many people meet every day must be closed, at the latest as soon as an infection is found there. Finally, public transport must also be considered, after all, the largest daily mass event that has not yet been canceled.

How easy it is to play the virus still depends not only on political decisions. Everyone can take responsibility, avoid infection-prone places, pay attention to hygiene and distance from others. Whoever protects himself from the pathogen cannot pass it on.

Full Article From Sueddeutsche Zeitung :