the Verfassungsgerichtshof (VfGH) has now sent questions to the Ministry of Health in the course of its examination of the corona measures, which are available to the APA. First and foremost, the supreme judges want to know how justified the regulations, which included lockdown and the 2G rule, were. The main focus is on the burden on the health system, to which the measures were linked.
It is common for the Constitutional Court to ask questions to the legislature in examination proceedings, including in this “to prepare for any oral hearing”. By February 18, the supreme judges are asking for information on the ten sets of questions that were sent to the Ministry of Health and its legal representatives on January 26. A number of complaints against the regulations were received by the Constitutional Court, which resulted in, among other things, a lockdown and the 2G and 3G rules.
The VfGH is interested in whether there was ever a threat of the health system being overloaded – a scenario that, according to the law, only justifies a lockdown. The question: “The Constitutional Court is therefore asking for information as to whether the hospitalization or death numbers given in the ordinance files include all people infected with SARS-CoV-2 who are housed in hospitals on normal or intensive care units or who are ‘on or with’ SARSCoV-2 died? If so, why is this counting chosen?”
It goes on in this tone. Exact data on the deceased – whether “on” or “with” Covid – as well as on hospitalizations and the age of those affected are requested. In addition, the VfGH wants to know which virus variants were present on January 1, 2022, on January 25, and on a daily basis and in what percentage among infected, hospitalized and deceased people. The ministry also asks about the “percentage of infections that are taking place in areas of life”, such as family, work, shopping and leisure activities.
The Constitutional Court also calls for facts on the various prescribed protective measures. Another question is: “By what factor does wearing an FFP2 mask in closed rooms or outdoors reduce the risk of infection or transmission?” And: “By what factor does the COVID vaccination reduce the risk of severe courses?” Further questions about the effectiveness of the vaccination follow, but also about the different tests.
The last questions relate to the “lockdown for the unvaccinated” and to what extent this has an impact on hospitalizations or the risk of hospitalization. Just two days after the questions were sent, this measure was lifted by the government. (apa)