October 31, 2020

Bavaria to offer free coronavirus tests to all citizens

All residents of the German state of Bavaria (south) will be able to take the COVID-19 test if they so wish, announced “Land” Prime Minister Markus Söder, who hopes that the rest of Germany will soon take the same measure. .

Starting this Wednesday, all Bavarians will be able to take the test for free, even if they do not present symptoms and have not been in contact with a person infected, according to the politician of the conservative Christian Social Union (CSU).

The Government of the federal state will bear the costs of the test as long as they are not covered by the interested person’s medical insurance; Those with symptoms will obtain a result in less than 24 hours, while those who do not will have a maximum waiting week.

Söder defended himself against criticism, stating that the rest of “Länder” would end up adopting the Bavarian strategy. “When we talked about closing schools they attacked me, in the end everyone ended up doing the same thing,” he said.

The initiative of the Bavarian Prime Minister had been criticized by the head of Health of the federal government, Jens Spahn, among others, who warned that, although “doing many tests sounds good”, it does not work without a systematic procedure.

“It creates a sense of false security, increases the risk of false positives, and creates a burden that reduces the ability to do existing testing,” Spahn wrote on Twitter Monday about the Bavarian strategy.

The Minister of Health stressed that the plan developed for Germany by the Robert Koch Epidemiology Institute (RKI) involves carrying out tests “selectively”, such as “preventive” tests in the health system or wherever local outbreaks occur.

The mayor of the city-state of Berlin, the socialist Michael Müller, defended for his part on Tuesday, in an interview with the regional radio station RBB, that tests for all will end up being a reality in the near future.

Müller maintained that at the moment it is not on the table to carry out “massive tests” in Berlin, where certain groups, such as daycare workers, do have the option to submit to the test.

However, he indicated that if a federated state launched this system, it would spread like a “wave” since the procedure would become faster and easier and it would soon be “little problem” to test large sectors of the population.


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