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German doctors demand fixed prices for surgical and FFP2 masks

German doctors demand fixed prices for surgical and FFP2 masks

German doctors demand fixed prices for surgical and FFP2 masks

Surgical and FFP2 masks have now been made mandatory in many areas of public life in Germany. Fearing that some sellers may capitalise on this and start charging exorbitant prices, the Association of General Practitioners has called upon the government to set fixed prices.

Make sure prices for masks are “fair”, urges doctors’ association

 “It would make sense to ensure that the masks are sold at fair prices,” said the association’s chairman, Ulrich Weigeldt, warning that the rule change meant some retailers were now charging excessive amounts for the masks. 

Weigeldt said that the government needed to prevent a situation like the one in the first lockdown last spring at all costs, when a rush on protective masks, disinfectants, hand sanitiser and toilet paper saw prices quickly spiral. “For example, a fixed price could be set which must not be exceeded,” he said. 

Some shortages of medical masks

On Tuesday, the federal and state governments agreed that “medical masks”, which provide better protection against COVID-19 than “everyday masks” made of fabric, must now be worn in shops and on public transport. This includes disposable surgical masks as well as FFP2 and N95 masks.

Since the announcement, there has been something of a rush on the masks - especially in Bavaria, where FFP2 masks were made mandatory as of Monday. Pharmacies in particular have been reporting shortages. There have also been reports of some retailers increasing their prices. 

Indeed, the masks are fetching wildly different amounts, depending on where you shop. In regular drug stores or pharmacies, for example, FFP2 masks have been selling for as much as 5 or 7 euros, while some online stores offer the masks for 1,50 euros or less. Health experts and the police have advised against offers that seem too good to be true, warning that a large number of counterfeit goods are circulating. 

Whichever retailer you buy from, make sure you pay attention to the CE mark, which should be followed by a four-digit number - this identifies the medical institute where the product was tested. 

Abi

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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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