Vienna: Covid 19 Test validity shortened from September

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In Vienna, CoV tests will in future be valid for less time as “3-G” proof than before. Mayor Michael Ludwig (SPÖ) said at a press conference in the early afternoon that the validity period will be shortened.

The validity will be changed as of September 1, he said: Specifically, a rapid antigen test performed at a test lane or pharmacy will only be usable for 24 hours instead of 48 hours starting in September. For PCR tests, the validity will be reduced from 72 to 48 hours. Only in the case of children under twelve years of age, the previous time periods will remain for the two variants.

Testing continues to be important because there are people who cannot or do not want to be vaccinated, Ludwig indicated. In principle, one also wants to switch to PCR tests in schools, Ludwig said when asked. Discussions are still underway with the Ministry of Education.

Rejection of “1-G rule” for the time being
Other Viennese measures already enacted will continue. For example, the mask requirement will continue to apply throughout the retail sector. Still under consideration is whether an FFP2 mask will again be mandatory in nursing homes in the future. Here, a simple mouth-nose protection was last allowed again. There will also be no change to the Vienna “3-G” requirement for children over the age of six. Also, as before, living room tests no longer count as proof of a visit to a pub, for example.

A “1-G rule” has been rejected for the time being. In Vienna, health councillor Peter Hacker (SPÖ) recently recommended, among other things, access restrictions for the unvaccinated. He does not hope that this will become necessary, but it could become necessary in the course of the fall, Ludwig said in response to a journalist’s question.

Concern about start of school
The pandemic is not over; he has a different assessment than some in the government, even before the summer, Ludwig said at the beginning of the press conference. Unfortunately, he was right in his assessment. The 7-day incidence is rising rapidly, not only in Austria. He also saw an upward trend in the development of hospital beds, which in his opinion is even more important, especially compared to the end of August of the previous year. He hopes that the strong dynamics can be stopped by additional vaccinations – for example in the group of travelers returning home.

There is a risk that the CoV virus will be passed on in schools. This is already seen in other countries, such as Germany’s North Rhine-Westphalia. Travelers returning home are also an issue, he said. He expects the federal government to offer comprehensive testing in this group.

The most important protection is vaccination, the mayor said. Starting Wednesday, there will be more low-threshold offers for vaccination in supermarkets. But he is against a general vaccination obligation, Ludwig continued. It is better to inform target group-oriented profoundly, he said.

Stricter approach already in place
Vienna has repeatedly imposed regulations that were stricter than in the rest of the country. For example, a mouth-nose protection must currently be worn in stores – something that is only required in the food trade outside Vienna. The regulation issued at the beginning of the summer that children in Vienna as young as six need to show proof of age in places where the “3-G rule” applies also caused a stir.

— source: orf.at/picture: pixabay.com

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