In Austria, the number of vaccines administered daily has risen to about 73,000 in the past week, from about 20,000 in October, official data shows, although the vast majority of those were boosters rather than first injections.
Austria has ordered a lockdown out of approximately two million people who are not fully vaccinated. It has one of the highest infection rates on the continent, with a seven-day incidence of 925 per 100,000 people, compared to 320 in Germany. The total death toll from the pandemic stands at 11,848
Neighboring Switzerland, which has not placed restrictions on unvaccinated people, has had less success with a new vaccination campaign – it persuaded just 35,000 to get their first shot in the past week.
Parts of Germany – including the capital Berlin – are demanding proof of vaccination or recent recovery from COVID-19 for all indoor leisure activities, a restriction that could be extended at a national meeting of officials on Thursday.
Germany also plans to force people who use public transport or go to work to present a negative COVID-19 test, proof of recovery or vaccination.
The situation with the coronavirus in Germany is dramaticChancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday.
Germany reported 52,826 new infections on Wednesday – a jump of a third from a week ago and another daily record, while 294 people died, bringing the total death toll to 98,274.
“It is not too late to opt for a first vaccination,” Merkel said at a congress of German mayors. “Everyone who gets vaccinated protects themselves and others. And if enough people are vaccinated, that’s the way out of the pandemic.”