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Corona: These rules currently apply in Lower Saxony

What rights do vaccinated people have?

People with full vaccination protection are exempt from testing and quarantine obligations. This takes effect two weeks after the second vaccination. However, those affected must not have any signs of illness. This does not apply to travelers returning from virus variant areas. There it remains with the need for a quarantine, as certain virus variants could lead to a lower effect of the vaccination protection. If fully vaccinated persons work in services close to the body, for example, it is sufficient to wear a medical mask - an FFP2 mask is not required. The country relies on a study by the Robert Koch Institute for the exemption: According to it, the risk of virus transmission by fully vaccinated people is lower from the 15th day after receiving the second vaccination dose at the latest than with a negative rapid antigen test in asymptomatic people Infected. Evidence of this vaccination must be documented in a vaccination card or a vaccination certificate.

When are there curfews?

Since April 24th, Lower Saxony municipalities have had a seven-day incidence of over 100 exit restrictions. They come into force when the municipality exceeds the limit on at least three consecutive days. In this case, staying in public spaces from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. the following day is only permitted in a few exceptions. Individuals are allowed to exercise until midnight. The exit restriction will only be lifted if the municipality is below the limit for five consecutive working days.

How many people can meet?

In private gatherings of the members of a household in a high incidence community with a person from another household, associated children up to the age of 14 can participate. In less severely affected areas, a household with two people from another household may meet. If the seven-day incidence in a municipality falls below 35, the relevant district or urban district may allow meetings of up to ten people from a maximum of three households. Children up to and including 14 years are not counted. People from another municipality are only allowed to attend such a meeting if the seven-day incidence there is also below 35. Since May 10, federal law has not counted people who were fully vaccinated 14 days ago and who have fully recovered from the contact restrictions.

What is the next step in schools?

For schools in Lower Saxony, too, the seven-day incidence value of 165 specified in the federal emergency brake has been decisive for schools since May 10th. If the infection rate in a rural district or an urban district is below this limit, alternating instruction (scenario B) is used at general and vocational schools, universities, extracurricular adult education institutions and similar institutions. Corona self-tests for schoolchildren, teachers and school staff are required for attendance. If the seven-day incidence exceeds the limit of 165, the students study at home (scenario C). For the 4th grades as transition classes, face-to-face lessons in scenario B are still possible with a value of more than 165. According to the Ministry of Culture, there is no provision for a change to scenario C (distance learning). The special schools with a special focus on intellectual development also remain independent of the incidence of alternating classes. The 12th grade also remains with a seven-day incidence of 165 in scenario B. In the classes of secondary level I and II, pupils must also wear a mouth and nose cover in class.

What applies in the daycare centers?

The limit of 165 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days in the respective district or urban district also applies to daycare centers: If the incidence is lower, regular operations apply: All children are allowed to go to their facility, but the individual groups remain among themselves, open concepts are not possible. For toub rooms or other rooms that are generally used by several groups, the following applies: Only one group may be there at a time. The same applies to the outside area. However, if it is large enough, it can be divided into different groups. If the incidence in a district or an independent city is above 165, the day-care centers offer emergency care for a maximum of half of the children in a group. A maximum of eight children can be cared for in day nurseries, and a maximum of 13 children in kindergarten groups. Day mothers and fathers are allowed to continue the care in the already very small groups.

Which areas of extracurricular education have opened?

In adult education centers, music schools and cultural education institutions, face-to-face teaching is permitted if the incidence of seven days is less than 165 per 100,000 inhabitants in the respective district or urban district. Lessons in driving and flight schools are also possible, and first aid training is permitted. The same applies to the preparation for the so-called dog driving license and its acceptance. Dog courses, training, exams and character tests are also possible. Practical training for hunters is also permitted, as is job-related training, further education and training.

Which shops are currently open?

All exceptionally open shops (including supermarkets, drugstores, medical supply stores and opticians) in high-incidence areas must limit the number of people in their premises: Shops with an area of ​​up to 800 square meters are only allowed one customer per 10 square meters to let. From 800 square meters of operating space, there is a limit of one customer per 20 square meters. Click & Meet is also permitted in high-incidence municipalities up to an incidence of 150 (RKI value). Over 150, only Click & Collect is possible. From an incidence of 100, a negative corona test or proof that you have been completely vaccinated against Covid-19 or have recovered is required.

What applies to gastronomy?

The outdoor areas of catering establishments (with and without food) may be open until 11 p.m. if the incidence is below 100 with a hygiene concept that provides for sufficient space between the individual tables. Access is only possible with a negative test result, if a complete vaccination or recovery cannot already be proven. The guests have to be at the tables.

Under what conditions are accommodation facilities allowed to receive guests?

After an urgent ruling by the Lüneburg Higher Administrative Court, accommodation establishments may again receive guests from outside the city. The so-called state child regulation was overturned. Guests must provide evidence of a negative test upon arrival and at least twice a week, with the exception of those who have been fully vaccinated and those who have recovered with evidence. Hotels and guesthouses, youth hostels and campsites may only be occupied up to 60 percent, for holiday apartments and holiday homes there is a one-day re-occupancy ban in order to equalize departure and arrival. With tests on arrival and twice a week, children's and youth camps of several days in group sizes up to 50 are permitted.

Which "body-oriented services" may be offered?

Physical services that are not necessary for medical, therapeutic, pastoral or nursing purposes are largely prohibited in high-incidence municipalities. Only the hairdressing trade and foot care offers are allowed under the following conditions: Submission of a negative Corona test certificate and FFP2 mask requirement for service providers and customers. If the seven-day incidence in a municipality is below 100, the corona test is only mandatory if a medical mask cannot be worn permanently during the stay.

Which leisure and cultural facilities are allowed to open and when?

Zoological and botanical gardens can be visited up to a 50 percent capacity limit without a test. However, only the outside areas can then be opened. If interiors are also to be opened, all visitors who have not been fully vaccinated or who have not recovered are required to test. Visiting museums, galleries, exhibitions and memorials is only possible with a negative test certificate or proof of complete vaccination or recovery. Here, too, there is a capacity limit of 50 percent. Theaters, cinemas, concert halls and cultural centers may hold seated events with up to 250 people in the open air with a hygiene concept and sufficient distance. Admission requirements are negative testing, full vaccination or recovery. Only events that are not designed for interaction and communication between visitors are permitted. Examples of this are a classical concert, a dance performance or a play, but not a football game.

What is still closed?

Indoor restaurants, clubs, discos and similar establishments remain closed. The same applies to trade fairs, congresses, commercial exhibitions, special markets, annual fairs and similar events. Theaters, opera houses, concert halls and cultural centers are also not yet allowed to open with the exception of events in the open air. Amusement arcades, casinos, betting shops and similar facilities as well as amusement parks and leisure activities that take place in closed rooms (e.g. indoor playgrounds) also remain closed. Saunas, thermal baths, swimming pools and fun pools also have to be patient. Openings are only permitted for swimming lessons and rehabilitation measures. Prostitution sites remain very tight.

When and where is sport allowed again?

If the incidence value is below 100, up to 30 children and adolescents up to and including 18 years of age can go back to playing contact sports outside with carers who have been tested, vaccinated or recovered - including team sports. Tested, fully vaccinated or recovered adults can still do non-contact sport in groups outside at a distance of at least two meters from each other. Swimming pools can be opened for swimming lessons and swimming courses. Teaching and adult participants must be tested, the groups may not include more than 20 people beyond the vaccinated and convalescent. In high incidence cases, contactless outdoor sports are permitted alone, in pairs or with members of the common household, as well as contactless sports in small groups of no more than five children up to the age of 14. The testing prescribed here for the trainer or supervisor cannot be dispensed with here - as in all other places where the Infection Protection Act in high incidence municipalities provides for testing - even for completely vaccinated people.

What does the test strategy look like?

Free citizen tests in one of the approximately 480 approved test centers nationwide can be used daily if required. In the event of a negative corona test, the test centers issue corresponding certificates that are valid for 24 hours. In some areas, proof of a negative Corona test result is mandatory. This applies to so-called body-hugging services when the required medical mask cannot be worn permanently. There, those responsible must offer visitors who cannot prove a PCR or rapid test a self-test. Before entering the facility, this is carried out or supervised by a trained person. In the event of a positive test result, the operator must refuse access and inform the local health department. The person providing the service is also required to test. In homes for the elderly or in need of care, as well as in day care facilities and assisted living facilities, employees and volunteers must take a test before entering. The same applies to visitors and service providers if the seven-day incidence in the relevant district is over 35. People who work in facilities for people with disabilities, in outpatient care facilities, in outpatient care services or in home nursing must carry out a corona test three days a week. Even top athletes have to be tested regularly before non-contact sports. In order to take part in face-to-face classes, students must take a self-test at home twice a week. There is also a compulsory test for teachers. However, this does not exist for the Abitur exams.

What do I need to know about the mask requirement?

In all facilities where visitors, customers or patients meet, it is mandatory to wear a medical mask. These include surgical masks, FFP-2 masks or those with the identification KN95. Breathing masks with an exhalation valve are prohibited. The wearing of medical masks is compulsory in shops, pharmacies, hairdressers, doctors' surgeries, car pools, weekly markets and in all closed rooms of businesses and institutions. In addition, a medical mouth and nose cover must be worn in all parking spaces associated with shops and facilities. FFP2 masks must be worn in local and long-distance public transport. Simple medical masks are no longer enough. Everyone at work must also wear a mask, unless they are at work and can keep a sufficient distance from other employees.