Supporting safe events with PCR testing

Event organizers finally need viable solutions: Supporting safe events with PCR testing

Dear Sir or Madam,

when the pandemic broke out, we started a new company, CoviMedical, to provide perspective and contribute to the containment of the pandemic. We come from the events industry, the sixth largest industry in the country. With CoviMedical, we offer corona testing at over 200 locations in Germany and Spain. Since inception, we have tested over 3 million people, detected thousands of infections, and helped break numerous chains of infection. 

After 1.5 years: Where are the concepts of politics?

After more than 1.5 years of the pandemic, we are horrified to realize that we are entering a situation in which the event industry is finally threatening to collapse for lack of sustainable solutions. Due to a lack of or inadequate concepts from politicians, we have no idea at all where we stand and how we should plan further. 

Policymakers are focusing on vaccination. In the meantime, enough vaccine is available, yet the vaccination tempo is decreasing. We are far from herd immunity, and very likely will never achieve it. Moreover, countries such as Israel and the UK show that the delta variant is breaking through vaccines and causing incidences to rise again. We operate numerous testing centers and laboratories in the Balearic Islands in cooperation with Juaneda, a leading private healthcare company there. There, a quarter of all people who test positive are double-vaccinated, and many among them also have symptoms.

In addition, too many omissions have taken place in recent months. During the European soccer championship and now also with the travelers returning, action was taken too carelessly or too late. The incidences are rising again, the cold season is approaching. Soon it will get colder and life will shift indoors again. Then the final hour of doom will strike for the event industry, the catering trade and many other sectors on which hundreds of thousands of livelihoods depend. So far, politicians have come up with no viable concepts.

We need vaccinations and tests

Vaccinations are an essential building block in the fight against the Corona pandemic, no question about it: However, the current examples show that vaccinations alone will not be sufficient, at least in the medium term, to make life with events, concerts or in clubs possible again. Only combined with an effective testing concept can we achieve the goal and avoid renewed restrictive measures. 

Rely on PCR testing for events

We rely on PCR testing for events. Why? PCR tests can detect the infection at a very early stage. In this respect, they are more reliable than rapid antigen tests. Thus, the model project of the Berlin clubs, which will be carried out next weekend and accompanied by the Charité, now also relies on PCR tests. 

Until now, PCR tests had been used less frequently than rapid antigen tests because they have to be evaluated in the laboratory. This made them more complex and expensive. In the meantime, the technology as well as the capacities have developed considerably. PCR tests can be performed at a lower cost than at the beginning of the pandemic and evaluated on the same day. 

Concepts are there, we now need the support of the federal and state governments! 

Nevertheless, the test costs play a role in the concepts. Smaller event organizers in particular will not be able to cope with the additional costs, especially since they have had hardly any orders for 1.5 years. Charging event participants would exclude some of the country's citizens from cultural events because they would then no longer be able to afford them. That's why we are counting on the support of the federal and state governments here -so that our culture can continue to be as diverse as it was before the pandemic.

There are numerous, close-meshed concepts from the event industry that could guarantee the safe operation of events. They integrate PCR tests and smart admission systems that take vaccination status into account, for example. Events with several thousand guests can already be implemented in this way. There is sufficient capacity and expertise available, including at our company. 

We therefore appeal to the decision-makers at federal and state level: PCR testing is the key to safe events. Enable nationwide solutions now that give the cultural and event industry a perspective and support events with PCR tests. Otherwise, we face the death of one of Germany's largest industries and a cultural drought from which we as a society will not recover for a long time. 

We look forward to your response. 

With kind regards

Christoph Neumeier
Managing Director, CoviMedical GmbH

(automatisch übersetzt)