The Berlin Charité virologist Christian Drosten doubts that Germany can achieve an acceptable vaccination quota in the corona pandemic through vaccination offers alone.

The main reason is a certain indifference in the population, said Drosten in the podcast "The Coronavirus Update" from NDR Info.

Germany will therefore “definitely” need contact limits again in the autumn.

"To go relaxed into the autumn is a daring idea," said the scientist in the podcast published on Friday.

Drosten was also not very optimistic about the number of corona patients in hospitals.

He reckons that the development will put a strain on both intensive care units and the other wards and emergency rooms.

For unvaccinated people over 60 years of age it is a "huge risk" to go unvaccinated this autumn.

Only 61 percent fully vaccinated

However, he does not assume that Germany will get much further with the vaccination quota by addressing the population, Drosten told the broadcaster.

"And that is why I believe that politics has a difficult task ahead of them and that they will have to consistently make decisions soon." In this context, Drosten was also asked about compulsory vaccination as an option.

So far, only 61 percent of the total population have been fully vaccinated.

In August, the vaccination rate only increased by around 10 percentage points.

According to the latest weekly report from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), 83 percent of the population over 60 years of age have full vaccination protection.

For adults between the ages of 18 and 60, the rate is 65 percent.

For children and adolescents aged 12 to 17, the figure is 21 percent.

According to RKI calculations, however, at least 85 percent of 12 to 59 year olds and 90 percent of seniors aged 60 and over must be fully vaccinated so that a distinct new wave with full intensive care units in autumn and winter is unlikely.

"Unfortunately, it was not possible to achieve this vaccination quota," summarized Drosten.

He himself had hoped for 80 percent.

In theory, you could quasi vaccinate yourself out of a pandemic, said Drosten.

The researcher believes that a vaccination quota of over 90 percent for society as a whole is necessary - which currently seems utopian.

One could try to convey the urgency of vaccinations in Germany, said the virologist.

“There is a fundamental openness.

At the moment I would only assume very few people who have not been vaccinated that they believe completely crazy stories. ”Sometimes it is rather a certain indifference that prevents a decision in favor of the vaccination.

That is the big difference to people in Portugal or Spain.

“They have had a terrible social experience.

Lots of deaths and a real lockdown, where you can only go outside for shopping with justification, and the military patrols the streets. ”That is a real lockdown.

“We didn't experience that in Germany.

I don't think we can simulate this experience in Germany in retrospect. "

Considerable pressure on the clinics

But what makes him optimistic is the high willingness to vaccinate among 12 to 17-year-olds, said Drosten.

“That is to be seen extremely positively.

We have a young, intelligent section of the population here. ”The virologist was also optimistic when it came to school.

It is quite possible to keep the school going in the winter months.

On the other hand, there will be considerable pressure on the clinics.

In the normal wards, Covid 19 patients would then compete for treatment capacities with sick people who have other needs.

For the intensive care units it is again a problem that the vaccination rate among the elderly with often severe forms of the disease has not risen above 90 percent.

With increasing incidences, there will also be intensive cases among younger people, added Drosten.

The majority of Covid patients in hospitals are not vaccinated.

Experience from England with high incidences in the delta wave also gave Drosten food for thought.

There were more hospital admissions and deaths there than he would have expected, said the virologist.

"There is still more risk of dying left."