District administrator and first county commissioner call for more flexible vaccinations
Across Germany, about 5 percent of those eligible have received a vaccination against Corona so far. In the Waldeck-Frankenberg district, the rate is 7 percent. This puts the district in a leading position throughout Hesse. But both District Administrator Dr. Reinhard Kubat and First District Councillor and Head of Health Karl-Friedrich Frese consider the situation unsatisfactory. "We need to increase the pace of vaccination, and that can only be done if we are given more freedom and are also allowed to vaccinate people who are not among the top priority groups," the two department heads said. Of course, they said, the full amount of vaccine available will be used for the vaccine-eligible group, but they are certainly prepared and able to administer additional allocations to people who are flexibly willing to vaccinate.
Countries such as Israel and Great Britain are much further ahead with immunizing the population than other countries, simply because they are more flexible in their strategies. The District Administrator and First District Commissioner certainly see room for a simpler and faster approach to vaccination. This is not least due to the fact that the vaccine of the British-Swedish manufacturer AstraZeneca, which is currently available in larger batches, suffers from an image problem that cannot be justified and leads to the rejection of the vaccine, which is in itself highly effective and has already proven itself millions of times over, by many people entitled to vaccination.
According to calculations by the German Press Agency (dpa), around 2 million doses could be in stockpiles across Germany by the end of the week, according to AstraZeneca. "Our aim is not to soften or even circumvent the prioritization list for vaccinations," Kubat and Frese emphasize. "These will continue to be in place and meticulously worked through." Still, they say, the phenomenon is that there is vaccine left over, which they want to use wisely and quickly to move ahead more quickly with immunizing the population. The vaccination teams are prepared and motivated, he said, and could expand their outreach even further. An app or other medium would be conceivable, with which it would be announced at a certain time of the day how many doses are still available and through which those willing to be vaccinated could spontaneously register. Both department heads also refer to a statement by Federal Health Minister
Jens Spahn, who had called for "principle-led pragmatism" in the ARD morning show on Wednesday, March 3, 2021, to ensure unbureaucratic planning and faster implementation of vaccinations. In doing so, the health minister himself called for a less formalistic approach to his own vaccination strategy, according to the county's leaders. The goal should be to allow free vaccinations. Citizens should be given the opportunity to simply ask at the vaccination center whether doses are available so that they can be vaccinated right away if necessary.
Both department heads made it clear once again that they were not concerned with repealing the valid vaccination ordinance with the prioritization groups contained therein, but rather with increasing the pace of vaccination through flexible and spontaneous use of any scope that arises. This, they said, was the prerequisite for rapid immunization of a large part of the population and thus also for an early return to normality in all areas of life.