Corona | Switzerland

Tests become chargeable in October

No more reason to drink: Unlike public transport, the mask requirement no longer applies in Swiss restaurants, provided you're vaccinated or recovered.
IMAGO / Geisser
No more reason to drink: Unlike public transport, the mask requirement no longer applies in Swiss restaurants, provided you're vaccinated or recovered.

The Swiss Federal Council does not want to tighten the screw on Corona protection measures until there is a threat of hospital overload. Tests of people without symptoms are no longer to be free of charge from October. Vaccinated and recovered people will be able to enjoy restaurant visits and events mask-free.

Switzerland intends to maintain the regulations in place since the end of June in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the decision of the first meeting after the summer break.

More freedom for vaccinated people

However, anyone in Switzerland who ignores the continued vaccination offer is to pay for their own Corona test costs from October, for example to attend a football match. People who cannot be vaccinated will remain exempt from this. However, the Federal Council will not make a definitive decision for another two weeks. The association Gastro Suisse is only partially satisfied with the ideas of the federal government: The Federal Council is hesitant to move towards normalization. It is pleasing that in the future the utilization of the health service is to be weighted more strongly, it says in a statement. "We demand that we soon return to normality," says Casimir Platzer, president of GastroSuisse, and adds: "Anything else would be incomprehensible." After all, the Federal Council had announced in May to start a normalization as soon as all vaccinated people were vaccinated, which is now the case according to the association.

No strict measures for allSince

, according to the Federal Council, everyone who wanted to be vaccinated could be by now, it wants to refrain from stricter measures. The obligation to wear a mask in public transport, for example, will remain in place. Outside, the mask requirement has been lifted in principle. Proof of vaccination is required for discos, dance halls and large events, and voluntary for smaller events, sports, culture and leisure, and restaurants. Events with compulsory seating for up to 1,000 participants do not require a certificate. Without mandatory seating, the number of attendees is limited to 500, and 250 indoors.

Home offices are still recommended. Employers decide if immunization certificates must be provided. For secondary schools and vocational schools, the canton decides.

Nevertheless, the development of the epidemiological situation in Switzerland should be closely monitored, especially after the end of the holidays. It remains to be seen how the return of holidays and the delta variant will affect hospital occupancy. An overload is "not to be excluded"

, it is said on the part of the political decision-makers. A new decision is to be made at the beginning of September.

Personal responsibility requiredTo

contain the COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Council advises the Swiss to vaccinate to prevent a severe course of infection. A new information campaign will be launched next week.

As a further means of combating the spread of the virus, Switzerland is sticking to mass testing in schools, businesses, hospitals and care facilities. The organisation is the responsibility of the cantons, which also ensure that unvaccinated care staff are repeatedly tested on a mandatory basis to protect people at risk.