Corona outlook – GECKO and government: can we learn from mistakes?


Corona outlook – GECKO and government: can we learn from mistakes?

Two years ago, then-chancellor Sebastian Kurz spoke of a “resurrection after Easter”. But how are you today?

The resemblance did not match reality. Now you are more careful. Immunologist Andreas Bergthaler – he is also a GECKO member – has three scenarios:

  • Best case: The pandemic is coming to an end, the virus doesn’t change much, the population is protected by an immune response.
  • Worst case: completely new variants that go deeper into the lungs. “If they also evade our immune defenses, we could be thrown back a long way. With lots of tough courses and loaded hospitals.”
  • However, the most likely scenario is more waves, especially in the colder seasons. Regional measures possible.

Immunologist expects ‘more contagious variant’ for the winter
Bergthaler: “I expect a more contagious variant before winter.” Still, the built-up immune protection would fundamentally help. The immune cells have learned and dig up what they have learned in an emergency.

“Even experts disagree on this”
Clear strategies and priorities are now needed. example children. You could say they’re exposed to infections anyway, so you could also expose them to SARS-CoV-2 to build immune protection early on. You could also say that you really want to protect the kids. “Even experts disagree on that.” Nevertheless, political decisions must be made and communicated in an understandable way. The roughly 20 percent unvaccinated will probably not be convinced. In addition, mandatory vaccination has been suspended. “It was a lesson not to act politically and communicatively.”

The special relationship between politics and science
GECKO’s relationship with the government is not only harmonious. Scientist Bergthaler understands when politics, which is under enormous pressure, deviates from expert advice. “But it becomes unacceptable when politicians hide behind us and falsely say, ‘They recommended that’ and use us as a fig leaf for their decisions.”

One thing is certain: it is serious that Austria has an unresolved problem with data or their interlocking. “After two years of pandemic, this is still a major obstacle for us to make timely assessments and decisions.”

Source: Krone


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