Dhe willingness to firmly believe that the pandemic is over, even though neither the World Health Organization nor the Robert Koch Institute have supported the all-clear and the depressing situation in China hardly speaks for it, shows all the traits of a strong meme. The message spreads almost unfiltered, and it is politically reinforced again and again. And that has consequences. This includes what everyone can observe in everyday life: that interest in the virus is generally decreasing and the willingness to take risks is all the greater.
But what does that mean for immune protection, or – thinking further – for protecting the population from possible new outbreaks? The fact is that the decisive reason why doctors or virologists like corona expert Christian Drosten speak of an endemic situation – a kind of epidemiological balance in the fight against the virus – says a lot about the immunity situation in the country and says almost nothing about the harmlessness of Omikron . Almost two thirds of the German population have now received a fourth dose, i.e. a booster vaccination. In the older age groups and in the immunocompromised, vulnerable sections of the population, the proportion of boosters is even higher. In addition, there is the high rate of infection with omicron, i.e. an infection-related immunity. A large part of the population started the new year with sufficient immune protection. At the same time, however, it inevitably weakens. Not very fast, but fast enough to make fresh infections more likely with each passing week.