Rising Corona cases How the health authorities in Bonn prepare for the autumn

Bonn · In order to be well prepared for the autumn, the health authorities are increasing their staff. A large number of other employees are already helping out, especially at the weekend. They are to follow up on contact persons in case of corona cases.

 The public health department is currently very busy with contact person tracking.

The public health department is currently very busy with contact person tracking.

Foto: Benjamin Westhoff

Autumn has arrived and the flu season is about to begin. Whether someone has been infected with influenza or coronavirus is often not immediately apparent. In order to be well-prepared for the coming months, the health authority has already increased its staff with doctors and other personnel. And the office wants to hire more, as the deputy city spokesman Marc Hoffmann announced on request.

At present, the health office has 96 permanent posts. Of these, 24 positions are for doctors, Hoffmann said. "Accordingly, the Public Health Office has 72 other positions, which are occupied by medical staff of different training and administrative staff. Six posts are still vacant.“

But the health office has now increased its staff. So far, two doctors and two administrative staff have been additionally provided, Hoffmann said. "A large number of additional administrative staff will be deployed mainly at weekends, in particular to support the contact person tracking staff." Furthermore, several positions for doctors and medical assistants are currently being advertised.

Bundeswehr was available to help with corona tests

It is not possible to quantify how many employees are involved in the traceability of Corona cases alone. According to Hoffmann, the personnel requirements in this area fluctuate greatly. This work has a "very high priority" in the health department. "When there is a high demand, for example when several classes have to be sent into quarantine due to a positive case at a school, staff from other departments are temporarily called in to help with this contact tracing". So far, this has ensured traceability in the schools.

In Cologne, among other places, the Bundeswehr has supported the local health authority with soldiers to carry out corona tests. The soldiers were also probably available to the city of Bonn. The city spokeswoman Monika Hörig says: "The city expressly welcomes the offer of the Bundeswehr and is thankful for it. Fortunately, we have not yet had to ask them for help because our capacities are sufficient.“ Whether the city will make use of the Bundeswehr's offer of help in view of the now rising infection figures is not yet certain. So Hörig answers: "Whether this would be necessary in the case of a significantly aggravated infection situation would be decided by the crisis team in due course.

After more than half a year of Corona, the mass of recommendations of the Ministry of Health is not diminishing. "There are still a large number of new recommendations, specifications or orders that have to be implemented in the short term," says Hoffmann. Against this background, staff training is still very important.

(Original text: Thomas Leurs / Translation: Mareike Graepel)

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