"Seems the state government of Brandenburg has probably misunderstood the Easter rest," tweeted left-wing opposition leader Sebastian Walter on Monday afternoon. It had become known that the twelve vaccination centers in Brandenburg would be closed over the Easter holidays. Vaccinated only on Maundy Thursday and on Holy Saturday, but not on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday, it was said from the Potsdam Ministry of the Interior.
The ministry has only recently taken charge of vaccinations, after Minister President Dietmar Woidke (SPD) withdrew responsibility from the Green Minister of Health, Ursula Nonnemacher. Since then, a crisis team in the Ministry of the Interior headed by CDU Minister Michael Stübgen has been responsible.
Sebastian Walter had no sympathy for the closure of the vaccination centers, he said: "We have to vaccinate every day in the current phase.
The only question is with what. "In the vaccination centers can also be offered only as many appointments as secured vaccine is available," says the deputy press officer of the Ministry of the Interior and Local Government, Andreas Carl: "The allocated doses can be vaccinated without the vaccination centers open on the Easter holidays."
Some other states are also not vaccinating for the Easter holidays due to short supply. In Schleswig-Holstein and Saxony, however, appointments have also been made for the upcoming holidays. And also in Berlin, the vaccination centers are open on the Easter weekend, according to spokesman Oliver Fey of the Senate Health Administration.
The criticism of the vaccination management is not new. Minister Nonnemacher had been accused of, among other things, a chaotic start. The fact that she had the vaccinations managed by the external consulting firm Kienbaum, which cost around 468,000 euros, was met with incomprehension. This was mainly due to the fact that Brandenburg was at times in last place in Germany in terms of vaccination progress.
For the first time, more than 70,000 doses vaccinated in one week
The crisis team now in charge is committed to success. In a press release, it announced that more than 70,000 vaccinations were administered in the state for the first time in its first week of operation. To be more precise, 70,795 people in Brandenburg received a first vaccination and 8656 people a second vaccination in the 12th calendar week. In the 11th calendar week, there were a total of only 47,238 and in the 10th calendar week 55,780 vaccinations.
Further, the Interior Ministry said that more than 50,000 vaccinations were administered at vaccination centers last week, while hospitals, doctors' offices and mobile vaccination teams each vaccinated about 9,000 people.
The state medical association says that's too little. It appeals to the federal state government to supply now preferentially medical practices with vaccine. In the third wave, high-risk patients living at home, who cannot come to the vaccination centers, are particularly threatened and should be vaccinated as quickly as possible by their family doctors.
In contrast to many other federal states, family members caring for elderly people or so-called risk children are also not yet vaccinated in Brandenburg. Ministry spokesman Andreas Carl blamed this on "scarce resources": "We know what burdens are associated with this for those affected - especially for family caregivers," he said: "We therefore hope that the green light will be given very soon for these groups of people as well."