This week has seen an increase in the number of Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations in Austria. According to ORF, this trend is expected to continue, as the effective reproduction number was calculated at 1.2 last week. 

Epidemiologists are divided on the best course of action. It is “strange” that masks are no longer required in supermarkets and on public transportation outside of Vienna, as per the public health expert and epidemiologist Hans-Peter Hutter of the Medical University of Vienna.

The epidemiologist Gerald Gartlehner of Danube University in Krems, however, supports lifting the requirement that infected people must be isolated. He also refuses to be vaccinated for the fourth time because he is not considered “at risk.” While masks reduce the risk of infection by around 80%, he believes they should not be made mandatory.

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