Health Minister Wolfgang Mückstein has invited the governors of Upper Austria and Salzburg to a crisis summit on Wednesday afternoon.
The reason for this is the dramatic increase in positive corona cases, especially in these federal states, says the minister. Mückstein did not want to anticipate the conversations themselves, which will take place via video link.
The health minister spoke of a dramatic situation in the two federal states addressed. The seven-day incidence per 100,000 inhabitants in Upper Austria is 1,173.5, in Salzburg 933. “It is clear that we have to act quickly, decisively and comprehensively,” Mückstein appealed to the authorities. The meeting with Haslauer and Stelzer will take place virtually (at 4.30 p.m.) – whether there will be a public media appointment after the video call was still unclear on Wednesday afternoon and would probably depend on the outcome of the talks.
Upper Austria speaks of “voting date”
In Upper Austria it is important that it is a matter of “a coordination date” between their own federal state, Salzburg and the health minister. This video conference had already been fixed on Tuesday, according to the APA request from Governor Stelzer’s office.
“We have to take the situation very seriously,” said Mückstein about the current corona situation in Austria as a whole. “The number of infections is rising rapidly,” he pointed out that with the 11,398 new infections reported on Wednesday, the five-digit range was reached for the first time. Even with the intensive care beds, the 400 limit had been exceeded (the day before, note), he also addressed the extremely tense hospital situation.
Newer vaccination call from Mückstein
At the same time, Mückstein emphasized that the measures taken (3G in the workplace and 2G in gastronomy and the like) would already have an effect. A tripling of both the first and third vaccinations could have been achieved. It was also possible to “drive” the tests away from the uncertain antigen tests towards the PCR tests: Here a 50:50 division between the two methods has already been achieved throughout Austria. Mückstein thanked all those who have already had the vaccination. “The solution lies before us, that is vaccination.”
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Tightening across Austria?
When asked whether there will be further, Austria-wide, measures apart from the talks with Upper Austria and Salzburg, Mückstein’s office said on Wednesday that the situation in these two countries was on the agenda. With regard to the expansion of the 3G obligation at the workplace targeted by Mückstein (in the direction of 2.5G with only PCR tests)
Mückstein: Contact reduction necessary
When asked about the fact that when he took office he had spoken of the fact that he would also make unpopular decisions and had declared that he would advocate a lockdown as soon as the intensive care units reached their limits, Mückstein said: In a pandemic, nothing can be ruled out . “At the same time he referred to the existing step-by-step plan that the man is now implementing.
He also appealed to everyone to cooperate in the containment of the pandemic: It takes a contact reduction of around 30 percent – “that’s what the experts tell us”, everyone could help “by washing our hands as we keep our distance” – and how to put on the FFP2 masks or get tested – and above all by vaccinating.
Opposition is sharply critical
Criticism of the government’s “catastrophic corona management” was on Wednesday, SPÖ Federal Managing Director Christian Deutsch: “The SPÖ has repeatedly appealed to the government to finally ensure that Corona management works with clarity, foresight and predictability. And we have repeated warned against oversleeping the summer and repeating the corona horror year 2020. ” However, the government “ignored all warnings and simply involved its negligent Corona Management by Chaos”. Ex-Chancellor Sebastian Kurz played a “particularly inglorious role”.
For SPÖ health spokesman Philip Kucher, the pandemic is slipping away from the government “once again completely”. “We have at least two problem parties in the pandemic in Austria. The FPÖ, which believes that vitamins are currently sufficient against the virus, and the ÖVP, which declares the pandemic to be over on time before each wave and then wonders why there is trust in the government is gone. ” (APA / Red.)
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