The corona pandemic has also had the Hanseatic city firmly in its grip for almost two years. But after extreme infection records, there is reason to breathe again: Fewer and fewer people are becoming infected with the virus.
February 12: 2G in retail falls away
In Hamburg, people without a corona vaccination or proof of recovery can go shopping in retail again from Saturday. According to the Corona Containment Ordinance, an FFP2 mask requirement now applies instead of the 2G regulation. Medical masks are sufficient for children between the ages of six and 13 and for employees in the sales outlets or shops.
For the first time in around two and a half months, unvaccinated people can go back to shops outside of daily needs. The red-green Senate around Mayor Peter Tschentscher (SPD) imposed the 2G rule at the end of November in view of the rapidly increasing corona numbers.
February 10: Infection numbers fall again
In Hamburg, the seven-day incidence of new corona infections fell again on Thursday. According to the health authority, the number of reported infections per 100,000 inhabitants within a week was 1,658.2 – after 1,758.5 on Wednesday and 2,036.9 a week ago.
The authority continues to point out that due to the high number of cases, there may be delays in reporting and it must therefore be assumed that the actual incidence is higher.
Thousands of new infections again
A total of 5,148 new cases were reported within one day – 212 fewer than on Wednesday and 1,909 fewer than on Thursday a week ago. At least 304,259 people have been infected in the Hanseatic city since February 2020. According to estimates by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), around 173,100 of them are said to have recovered.
The number of people who have died of or in connection with Corona since the beginning of the pandemic was given as 2,195, 11 more than the previous day.
February 9: Survey: Children continue to suffer mentally from the pandemic
According to an analysis by Hamburg scientists, the psychological stress on children and young people in the corona pandemic is still high. Around a third feels that their quality of life is less. Before the Corona crisis, it was 2 out of 10 children, i.e. a fifth.
This is the result of the third survey from autumn 2021 of the so-called Copsy study by the University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), which was presented on Wednesday. However, the psychological well-being and quality of life of the boys and girls have improved compared to previous surveys during the pandemic because contact restrictions are no longer as strict, schools have reopened and sports are offered.
More than 1,000 children and 1,600 parents surveyed
According to the information, the researchers also found slightly fewer mental abnormalities in the children than in the first two surveys – at 29 percent, however, they were still about 10 percentage points more affected than before the pandemic.
In the Copsy study, the UKE researchers are investigating the effects and consequences of the corona pandemic on the mental health and well-being of children and young people in Germany. From mid-September to mid-October 2021, more than 1,100 girls and boys and more than 1,600 parents took part using an online questionnaire.
According to the head of the study, a different standard was chosen for the valuation this time, in accordance with international conventions, compared to the reports on the earlier surveys.
Health Senator expects “free summer”
Hamburg’s health senator Melanie Leonhard is expecting a largely carefree summer in view of the corona situation. “I am quite sure that we will experience a very, very free summer,” said the SPD politician to the “Bild” newspaper (Monday). “Autumn will definitely be more strenuous – but I think it will be less difficult than this one.”
Leonhard emphasized that a decision on easing the corona measures could only be taken when it was clear that the omicron wave was over. “By mid-February we will see more clearly: If the hospital numbers have not increased by then, the omicron effects can be assessed.”
The second mayor and science senator Katharina Fegebank (Greens) made a similar statement in the “Hamburger Abendblatt” (Monday): “If we now withdraw all containment measures too quickly, I would be concerned that we would have to reverse some of the easing after a short time, if, for example the situation in hospitals in other parts of the country is getting worse.” With a view to the prime ministers’ conference on February 16, however, a clear timetable must be discussed.
February 4: Corona crisis team chief: “There is no way around the boosters”
The head of the Corona crisis team in the Chancellery, Major General Carsten Breuer, has appealed to the people of Hamburg to get vaccinated against the virus. “Structures and vaccines are there,” said Breuer on Friday in the town hall after an hour-long conversation with Mayor Peter Tschentscher (SPD).
Anyone can get vaccinated. There is enough vaccine. “Boosters help and protect. In my opinion, boosters are the best protection, it’s the ultimate, there’s no way around boosters,” emphasized Breuer.
Hamburg in 9th place among the federal states when boosting
According to the Robert Koch Institute, 81.3 percent of Hamburg residents have been vaccinated at least once. 79.8 percent have complete basic protection with the second injection that is usually necessary. So far, 52.4 percent of the residents have received a booster vaccination.
Hamburg ranks third behind Bremen and Saarland for the first and second vaccinations in a country comparison, but the Hanseatic city remains in ninth place among the 16 countries for booster vaccinations.
Tschentscher certified that Breuer and the crisis team did a good job. “They have helped us a lot (…) that for some time now we have been able to deliver sufficient vaccines that are adequate for the population.” That improved the situation. At the same time, he praised his own pandemic management. A lot is going very, very well. “Rough things – injected the wrong vaccines, taken salt, administered five times the doses somewhere – we didn’t have any of that in Hamburg,” said Tschentscher.
3 February: Strict controls in the HVV for 3G and FFP2 obligation
Today, Thursday, as part of the control day, almost all of northern Germany (except Bremen) will be strictly checked for compliance with the 3G rule and the FFP2 mask requirement in the HVV. “A joint day of action is planned, in which transport companies, public transport authorities, the police and regulatory authorities will take part,” explained Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania’s Economics Minister Reinhard Meyer (SPD).
According to the “Hamburger Abendblatt”, the S-Bahn Hamburg and the Hochbahn are also taking part in the day of action. Violations are subject to a fine. According to Hochbahn, around 95 percent adhere to the rules, Deutsche Bahn quotes a quota of 99 percent as far as compliance with the 3G rule is concerned.
February 2: Incidence in Hamburg increased again
After three days of falling numbers, the seven-day incidence of new corona infections in Hamburg rose again on Wednesday. The health authority gave the number of reported infections per 100,000 inhabitants within one week as 2,076.6 – after 2,038.9 on Tuesday.
A week ago the value was 2,051.3. The social authorities continue to point out that the high number of cases can lead to delays in reporting and that it must therefore be assumed that the actual incidence is higher.
A total of 7,277 new cases were reported within one day – 1,868 more than on Tuesday and 718 more than a week ago. At least 265,622 people have been infected in the Hanseatic city since February 2020 – 155,700 of them are considered recovered according to estimates by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). The number of people who have died from or in connection with Corona since the beginning of the pandemic has increased by eleven to 2,147.
Based on a different calculation method, the RKI gave a seven-day incidence of 1,511.1 for Hamburg on Wednesday. This means that the Hanseatic city still has the third-highest value in Germany after Berlin (1,694.4) and Hesse (1,533.0).
February 1st: School authorities put together a support package against the consequences of Corona
With a funding package worth 34 million euros, Hamburg wants to take action against corona-related learning deficits and mental problems among schoolchildren. Of this, around 26 million euros are earmarked for additional support courses in the afternoon and learning opportunities during the holidays, said School Senator Ties Rabe (SPD) on Tuesday after the meeting of the red-green Senate. A further eight million euros would be made available for additional advice and support services for schoolchildren with social and psychological problems.
It’s about helping children and young people to overcome the consequences of school closures, said the senator. “There is increasing evidence that the school closures have left a clear mark on the education and mental and social development of many students.” It is therefore crucial for success “that the schools remain open now and are not closed again or organized in alternating classes”.