Stuttgart (dpa / lsw) – Eleven months after the first corona infection became known in Germany, vaccinations against the dangerous virus have also started in the southwest. On Sunday, people over 80 were vaccinated across the country, as well as nurses and hospital staff at high risk. The vaccination centers began operations, and mobile teams also drove to nursing homes and old people’s homes.
“This is the beginning of the end of the pandemic”, commented Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann on the start of the vaccination at the official start in the Stuttgart Liederhalle. There, the 30-year-old nurse Christine Helbig received the first injection in the presence of dozens of representatives from politics, the media and medicine. Helbig has been working in an isolation ward with Covid 19 patients in the Stuttgart Clinic for months.
In the vaccination center in the Liederhalle alone, 500 people should be vaccinated over the afternoon. The first doses of the vaccine arrived at the Stuttgart Clinic in the morning and were processed and thawed in the hospital pharmacy.
The fact that vaccination has now started also proves what society is capable of, said Kretschmann. The day is the hopeful end to a year that has pushed people to their limits. The vaccine is the key to the longed-for return to accustomed life, said Kretschmann – even if one has to remain patient.
The Green politician appealed again to the population’s willingness to vaccinate. “The vaccine is safe and effective,” he said. At most, there could be minor side effects, but they are not dangerous. “With each vaccination, the virus will be able to circulate less well,” said Kretschmann.
To achieve what is known as herd immunity, around 70 percent of the population would have to be vaccinated. Anyone who does not want to be vaccinated must consider the consequences for society, said Kretschmann. The only alternative is a high contamination level, he warned. “I’ll get myself vaccinated when it’s my turn.”
The highest priority in the vaccination order initially have older people over 80 years of age and nursing home residents as well as staff in intensive care units and in emergency rooms. Then come older people over 70 or people with dementia or transplant patients. This is followed by citizens older than 60, people with a medical history, the police and fire brigade, staff in daycare centers, schools and retailers.
In contrast to other federal states, the vaccine in Baden-Württemberg is not distributed via a central warehouse, but delivered directly to the central vaccination centers. In a first batch, 9,750 cans were shipped to the country over the weekend. Health Minister Manne Lucha (Greens) expressed regret on Sunday that they had not yet received as much vaccine as one could actually inject. The country has the necessary infrastructure, about enough needles and syringes.
In addition to the central vaccination centers (ZIZ) in Ulm, Tübingen, Heidelberg, Freiburg, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe, Offenburg, Rot am See and Mannheim, around 50 district vaccination centers (KIZ) will be ready in the city and rural districts from mid-January. In the course of 2021, the vaccination will be given by the family doctor. If you want to receive the voluntary vaccination, you have to register by calling 116 117 or online via the website www.impfterminservice.de. The vaccination should take place in two doses at an interval of around three weeks, so you will be allocated two vaccination appointments.
In the vaccination center, general information about the vaccination is first provided, followed by an individual explanation by a doctor, for example about the risks of allergies or previous illnesses. Only then does it go to vaccination. After the prick in the arm, you should stay for a 30-minute observation. The vaccination centers are open seven days a week. According to a delivery schedule from the Mainz-based company Biontech, 87,750 doses of the corona vaccine are to be delivered to the southwest from the end of December. The delivery quantity depends on the number of residents of the state.
The number of verified new corona infections in Baden-Württemberg rose by 1136 cases within one day, according to information from Sunday (as of 2 p.m.). The seven-day value for new infections per 100,000 inhabitants is currently 152.6 for the entire country – significantly less than in the past few days. However, since the Robert Koch Institute expected a lower number of tests and fewer reports from the health authorities during the holidays, these numbers are only partially comparable with the values of the previous week.