Up to 3,5 million more people vaccinated in Germany than previously thought

Up to 3,5 million more people vaccinated in Germany than previously thought

Up to 3,5 million more people vaccinated in Germany than previously thought

Some 3,5 million more people than previously thought may already be vaccinated against coronavirus in Germany, according to a new survey by the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). The news has been welcomed by German Health Minister Jens Spahn. 

Germany’s vaccination rate 5 percentage points higher than thought

The RKI announced on Thursday that the number of people vaccinated against COVID-19 may actually be higher than official statistics indicate. Using citizen surveys and reporting data, the RKI estimates that the real number of vaccinations carried out in Germany is up to 5 percentage points higher than previously thought - equating to some 3,5 million people. 

The institute, therefore, believes that up to 84 percent of adults aged over 18 in Germany have received at least one jab, and up to 80 percent are fully vaccinated. Official reports show that less than 80 percent have received one jab, while just over 75 percent are fully vaccinated.

“The vaccination rate reported in the Digital Vaccination Rate monitoring should be understood as a minimum vaccination rate,” the RKI’s latest report concluded. 

More vaccinations equal more security for winter

The news was happily received by German Health Minister Jens Spahn, who wrote on Twitter that the estimate shows that Germany’s vaccination campaign has been more successful than previously thought. “This gives us additional security for autumn and winter,” he wrote. 

He added that, with this higher rate of vaccination, further coronavirus restrictions could be dropped - such as hygiene and mask rules for outside areas. “We’ve not yet reached our goal, but from today’s perspective there will be no need for further restrictions,” he said. 

Why do experts think the vaccination rate is higher?

There are a number of factors that could have contributed to the discrepancy between the two figures. On the one hand, there could have been data reporting issues with people receiving their jabs in Germany, or receiving their jabs abroad or, in fact, no longer residing in Germany despite being registered here. 

On the other hand, it is also possible that there were issues with how representative of the population the RKI’s survey actually was. Around 1.000 people were interviewed, who seemed to show an above-average willingness to get vaccinated. Since the interviews were conducted in German, and on the phone, the data is therefore likely to exclude certain population groups. 



Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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