The German pandemic plan and that we could be facing

Two days ago, the world has warned health organization, WHO, in connection with the Coronavirus a pandemic. Including a country – and a continent that is understood cross-spread of an infectious disease; an epidemic is restricted locally. Some virologists are with the worldwide occurring current Corona-cases of the view that the threshold for a pandemic has already been crossed. In the face of several confirmed cases in Germany, the Federal Minister of health, Jens Spahn (CDU) has spoken of a “new quality” of the situation, which is caused by the fact that not every infection is the case, the origin and the contact persons determined precisely could be.


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The interior and the Ministry of health have formed the rod, therefore, in the meantime, a crisis that has taken according to Spahn his work. The convening of such a crisis staff is included in the National pandemic plan (NPP), which was first published in 2005 and has since twice been updated, most recently in March 2017. Since the health system förderal is built, exist in every state of appropriate pandemic plans, on the basis of which the authorities are operating directly on the ground – like now, for example, the district of Heinsberg with a crisis staff for the confirmed Corona cases in Erkelenz.

Pandemic plan: The main points

In essence, the pandemic plans of the Federation and the länder in the case of an impending or onset of a pandemic, the following measures:

WHO must the event of a pandemic explain

A prerequisite for the implementation of the NPP, the Declaration of the Pandemic by the WHO is set. In the case of the current Coronavirus experts believe that this is imminent. The corresponding Declaration of the WHO is, Germany needs to activate his NPP. Immediately thereafter, the Federal States put their pandemic plans into force.


14 further infections in NRW – about 1000 people in the district of Heinsberg in quarantine

Legal framework for measures

The NPP also includes the legal framework for the measures aimed at the prevention and spread of infectious diseases. In addition to the existing laws (including the infection protection act, with provisions for quarantine), and regulations (including the reporting obligation) is authorised by the Federal Ministry of health for the pandemic case-specific steps. A stricter reporting obligation, and a decree regulating the payment of costs by the health insurance companies may optionally include a vaccination,. The statutory provisions for the work protection of medical personnel in the outpatient and stationary use are also part of the NPP.

The WHO distinguishes four phases

The NPP-controlled measures and procedures work in Essentially the of the world health organization defined “Pandemic Phase”. This is the third of four phases defined by the WHO for influenza pandemics, including the current distribution of Covid-19,. The four phases are:

Infections and deaths

You can see on the interactive map, such as the Coronavirus is spreading

Almost every continent is now affected by the Coronavirus. The interactive map shows in which countries, how many infections have been reported and how many deaths there were.

Origin of the National pandemic plan

The NPP is to contain no special preparation on the current Coronavirus, but rather as a part of international efforts to recognize communicable diseases, to stop and, ideally, prevent. However, influenza viruses constantly change by small mutations in their genome, so that there are always new viruses occur, and custom requires a defense.

Therefore, the idea of a global Influenza pandemic planning, which was fleshed out in 1993 at an international Symposium in Berlin was created. The world health organization, presented in 1999, a first sample plan that was used by the member States as a basis for the detailed preparation of national pandemic plans. The patterns were adapted in 2005, 2009 and 2013. Germany, began in 2001 in a Federal-Länder working party with the pandemic planning. The current NPP was published in 2005, was used in the H1N1 2009 pandemic and on the basis of the findings, more updated. The current version is valid since 2017. The NPP consists of structure and action part and a part that contains the scientific basis.

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Advantages and disadvantages of the Federal structure

The Federal pandemic-organization in Germany carries with it both advantages and disadvantages. The responsibility of the Länder and the local authorities can be taken, as a rule, faster and more effective against the spread of a disease than when all of the actions must be centrally coordinated and arranged. Critics call for the establishment of a panel of experts at the Federal level and the binding nature of the NPP to doubt in view of the existence of the countries pandemic plans – especially as these differ, in turn, is in the Details. The pandemic must be coordinated, therefore, the standing conference of the Minister of health again and again. Baden-Württemberg has been adjusted due to the current situation with confirmed Corona cases in Göppingen in its pandemic plan two days ago.

Sources: National pandemic plan the world health organization, the Robert Koch Institute, daily topics, health portal of the city of Berlin, Pandemic Influenza Risk Management WHO

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