New Quranic rules: Unclear starting time causes trouble

As of: January 9th, 2022 8:03 pm

Corona quarantines should be ended earlier – but from when this applies, the federal and state governments left open. This creates uncertainty and even anger. Some municipalities are now regulating the matter independently.

By Philipp Eckstein, ARD capital studio

The omicron variant of the corona virus is spreading rapidly in Germany – the incidence has been rising for days. More and more people have to be in isolation or as a contact person in quarantine because of an infection with the virus.

Philipp Eckstein
ARD capital studio

There has recently been great concern that if the number of cases continues to rise, there could be staff shortages, for example in the healthcare sector.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz and the prime ministers of the federal states therefore decided on Friday to shorten quarantine and isolation times.

Scholz presented the diagram of the new rules at the press conference. Numerous heads of government of the countries also reported in interviews about the shortened quarantine and isolation times. The federal government advertises them as “The current Corona regulations” on their homepage and on Twitter.

“Make changes promptly”

The problem: In the press conferences and communications, it was hardly made clear when the new rules actually come into force. Also in the joint resolution on Friday there is only a note that “the federal and state governments will make the necessary changes to the legal regulations promptly”.

However, this information apparently did not reach many people. Many thought the new rules apply immediately.

Maximum confusion among citizens and authorities

A senior officer of a district administration reports the ARD capital studiothat this led to significant problems over the weekend.

Many people would have ended their quarantine or isolation prematurely. Employees of the health department were sometimes insulted so badly that there were tears. Many callers did not want to accept that the new rules were not yet in force, said the officer.

The health authorities were brought into this situation without need because it had not been clearly communicated when the shortened quarantine and isolation times would come into force.

There may have been similar problems in other places as well. Many questions from unsettled citizens can be found on social media. The city of Hamburg, for example, is now pointing out directly on its website that the quarantine rules announced on Friday are not yet valid.

Lauterbach believes in quick implementation

The new regulations are expected to come into force next weekend at the earliest. Because in order to implement the federal-state resolutions, the so-called COVID-19 Protective Measures Exception Ordinance must first be changed.

The Bundestag is expected to vote in the course of the week, the Bundesrat should decide on Friday. Subsequently, the federal states have to implement the new rules in some cases with their own regulations.

Im “Report from Berlin” said Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach that he was confident that it would go very quickly.

A district is already rushing forward

At least one district seems to be taking too long. The North Rhine-Westphalian Ennepe-Ruhr district, to which the city of Witten belongs, announced at the weekend that it would “implement the new rules immediately”. That was decided after consultation with the State Ministry for Labor, Health and Social Affairs. However, since the new regulation is still missing for this, the possibility of so-called individual decisions is used.

The calls for comparable exceptions should fuel that in other parts of the country and federal states. The employees in many health departments have to be prepared for further discussions.

The federal and state governments could have prevented this if they had clarified after their meeting when the new quarantine rules come into force.

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