Germany: Spahn warns of holiday COVID-19 risks, urges citizens to stay in Germany

German Health Minister Jens Spahn warned about coronavirus risks during holidays, urging citizens to consider spending Autumn and Christmas holidays in the country, during a joint press conference with Berlin's Minister of Health, Dilek Kalayci, in the German capital on Saturday. «This we had at great expense, but we have handled this returning travellers situation well. Maybe we manage it together for the Autumn holidays, and also possibly for the Christmas holidays, not to travel so far, and perhaps to enjoy the beauty of Germany,» he added. Spahn said he was optimistic that Germany would find itself in a better position in six months, with the benefit of hindsight. «In six months we will be even more wiser, as we are now. In the same way, and are more wise than six months ago. And that I am confident that in six months we will be better at finding the balance between the best possible infection protection and as much everyday life as possible,» stated Spahn. The health minister also announced a multi-million-euro pact for the public health service, stressing that at least 5,000 new jobs would be created before 2022. The money is also to be used for the investment of digitalisation and making sure systems are up to date and working. «For these personnel, the building and development, there will be three billion euros [$3.5 bil], available from the pact. The investment into the digitalisation is just as important, for that there will be the integration of federal and state government. An information platform will be built, and the individual health official departments to be brought up to date, with modern hard and soft ware, an adequate IT structure, with security concepts. And for that, 800 million euros [$947 mil] be available from the pact,» Spahn told reporters.
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