The German Euthanasia Association Verein Sterbehilfe is ahead of the curve in the face of increased COVID infections and the prospect of obligatory immunization across Europe. The group said this week that it will only euthanize people who have been vaccinated or who have recovered from the sickness.
“Euthanasia and the preparatory examination of the voluntary responsibility of our members willing to die require human closeness,” they said. “Human closeness, however, is a prerequisite and breeding ground for coronavirus transmission. As of today, the 2G rule applies in our association, supplemented by situation-related measures, such as quick tests before encounters in closed rooms.”
According to the statement, balancing the protection of its members, staff, and physicians is a "difficult task" but Dr. Martin Großmann, the medical team's head, is on hand to help.
Only 68 percent of Germans have had their vaccinations. On December 1, the country had 446 fatalities, the highest daily COVID death toll in nine months, and 75,456 positive cases.
Chancellor Angela Merkel and the 16 state premiers proposed the 2G mandate earlier this month, alluding to a system known as geimpft oder genesen that restricts unrestricted mobility for leisure activities to those who have been vaccinated or recovered.
According to EU Commission Chief Ursula von der Leyen, this may not be enough.
“How we can encourage and potentially think about mandatory vaccination within the European Union?” she said during a new conference on Wednesday. “This needs discussion. This needs a common approach, but it is a discussion that I think has to be led.”
Though it is up to the individual countries to determine what mandates to enforce on its population, some countries have already made that move.
Austria has announced compulsory COVID vaccinations beginning February next year, while Greece is fining all unvaccinated over-60s $145 (€100) a month.
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