The Government, the Berlin Senate has closed pubs, cinemas and fitness studios. Restaurants remain open.
After much hesitation, the Berlin Senate is imposing drastic restrictions on public life. Mayor Michael Mueller (SPD) announced over the weekend: “These measures will massively affect each and every one of us in our daily lives. But they are urgently needed to slow down the spread of the coronavirus”.
Schools and Kindergarten will be closed until 19 April. Cultural life and sports will come to a complete standstill. Senate for Culture decided to close the large stages of all state theatres, opera houses and concert halls from Wednesday, 11 March, until the end of the Easter holidays on 19 April. However, events can still take place in the smaller halls of these institutions and in generally smaller houses.
Events bigger than 50 persons are forbidden!
Berlin bans all public and private events for 50 or more people. Contact lists must be created for events with less than 50 participants. These must be kept for four weeks and must be handed over to the health authorities in case of an emergency.
These places are closed with immediate effect: Pubs, bars, cinemas and clubs as well as public and private sports facilities must close immediately. This also applies to fitness studios, brothels and casinos. Strict rules also apply to hospitals. Only patients under the age of 16 and seriously ill patients may still be visited. The same applies to nursing homes.
Many Restaurants and all Supermarkets, Drugstores and Pharmacies remain open Restaurants may remain open if there is a distance of 1.5 metres between the tables. Supermarkets remain open without conditions.
The official decree of Berlin Senate can be found in German language here.
The police have been enforcing the ordinance since yesterday evening, March 14. According to a spokesperson for the interior senate, two hundred units of police were on the streets in Berlin for this purpose. Those who violate the assembly and opening bans are committing a crime. The base of punishment is the Infection protection law. Violations against it are punished with a prison sentence of up to five years or a fine (up to 25,000 euros). So if you have a bar, close it!
Closure of Kindergarten, Preschools and Schools
As of Monday, 16 March, vocational schools and senior high school centres in Berlin will close. From Tuesday, all schools and Kindergarten (“Kita”) will close until after the Easter holidays, i.e. April 19. However, every school will have an emergency service for children of parents from professional groups such as the police or fire department.
How emergency care is organized
All Kitas can continue to offer emergency care. Berlin Senate Department for Youth thus reacted on Saturday to reminders from Charité virologist Christian Drosten, who had described the initially communicated centralization as “counterproductive”.
Mr. Drosten said that the infection would be “fired” if children were grouped into new groups. Thereupon, youth senator Sandra Scheeres (SPD) had again consulted with representatives of Kitas and revised the decisions made on Friday.
However, only those parents who work in system-relevant professions and cannot organize any other possibility of child care would be entitled to this. Both criteria must apply. The parents must submit a corresponding self-declaration.
The Senate Department of the Interior has determined which professions are considered “systemically relevant”. The Senate assumes that the criterion applies to about 15 percent of parents.
These professions are considered “systemically relevant”.
Police, fire brigade and aid organisations
Crisis unit staff
Operationally necessary personnel of BVG, S-Bahn, BWB, BSR, other public transport companies as well as supply and disposal companies, energy supply (electricity, gas)
operationally necessary personnel in the health sector (in particular medical staff, nursing staff and medical assistants, cleaning staff, other personnel in hospitals, medical practices, laboratories, procurement, pharmacies)
Operationally necessary personnel in the care sector
Operationally necessary personnel and key functionaries in public institutions and authorities at federal and state level, senate administrations, district offices, state offices and subordinate authorities, job centres and public assistance and emergency services
Staff to ensure emergency care in day nurseries and schools
Other personnel required for critical infrastructure and basic services
Local public transport is maintained
Initial statements from Berlin Senate on a drastic restriction of local public transport (ÖPNV) are not correct. The traffic administration announced on Friday that public transportation would be maintained as long as possible. Other mobility concepts do work as well.
Hotlines: Here you can get help in case of suspicion
Berlin Senate has set up a central corona hotline. This can be reached daily from 8 to 20 o’clock under 030/90282828. Because several hundred calls were recently received daily, the hotline has been reinforced. Nevertheless, there are still long waiting time.
What to do if you have a cough, cold or fever yourself? In this text we also provide information about the six contact points in Berlin and the various ways to get advice by telephone.
If you have slight cold symptoms, it is best to contact your family doctor by telephone – recently it has also become possible to take sick leave for up to seven days, the regulation is valid until 5 April. The sick note is then sent by post.
The following applies for children: In the case of an upper respiratory tract illness, the doctor can certify that the parents are unable to work.
The Senate recommends to be vigilant in the following cases: Anyone who has had contact with a confirmed corona patient in the past two weeks should stay at home and contact the responsible health authority. This also applies if you have been in one of the risk areas defined by the Robert-Koch-Institut (RKI) in the past weeks – especially if you have even slight symptoms.
The health insurance companies have also set up telephone hotlines for enquiries. The Barmer can be reached at 0800/8484111. The DAK has also switched the number 040/325325800 (call at local rate) around the clock. There, doctors and hygiene experts would answer the questions of insecure callers. Those insured with other health insurance companies may also contact the two health insurance companies.
For “non mobile patients”, the fire department and the Kassenärztliche Vereinigung (KV) Berlin started a joint transport service. Between 7 and 22 o’clock this service will take care of patients with severe colds who need a doctor at home or in nursing homes. This service can be reached at 116117.
The following six contact points are open, if you think, you might caught Covid19:
Charité Virchow Klinik in Wedding (Mittelallee 1; open daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.)
Gemeinschaftskrankenhaus Havelhöhe in Spandau (House 16, Kladower Damm 221, open Mon-Fri 9-20 h)
Vivantes Klinik in Prenzlauer Berg (Diesterwegstraße, Mon-Fri 10-19 h, Sat/Sun 10-17 h)
Vivantes-Wenckebach Klinik in Tempelhof (Albrechtstraße, Mon-Fri 10-19, Sat/Sun 10-17)
Evangelisches Krankenhaus Königin Elisabeth Herzberge in Lichtenberg (House 19, Herzbergstraße 79, Mon-Fri: 10-19 h, Sat/Sun 10-17 h), Website
DRK-Klinikum Westend in Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf (House 10, Spandauer Damm 130, Mon-Fri: 9-15 o’clock)
The following applies to all clinics: Please do not go there just like that, but contact us by telephone first.
In the case of the Charité, the two Vivantes Clinics, the Herzberge Clinic and the Westend Clinic, interested parties should find out before their visit from the hotline of the Senate Health Administration (Tel. 030/90282828, daily 8-8 o’clock) whether testing for the coronavirus is advisable.
Anyone wishing to visit the outpatient clinic at the Havelhöhe Hospital is requested to first call the clinic’s hotline on Tel. 030/36501-7222. Patience may be necessary. The hotline is practically “permanently manned”, a spokeswoman said on Monday.
The locals hoard toilette paper, flour and noodles. If you are invited, it might be a good idea to bring those articles instead of flowers. And buy yourself a good stock, if you want to say “Ich bin ein Berliner!”
Some of the best Micheli star restaurants in Berlin are closed now!
This article was written with information of Berlin Senate, Gourmet Report and Tagesspiegel.
Berliner Tagesspiegel, THE daily newspaper, has always the latest news about Covid19 in their virus blog. (German language)
Stay healthy! Avoid Krauts! 😉
Rewe has on Monday (16.3.2020) an offer: