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Why experts believe Austria’s third wave of Covid ‘has peaked’

A consortium of experts now expects coronavirus infections to decrease across Austria, but does not expect the situation in intensive care units in the eastern states to ease until the end of April. 

Doctors with a patient
BERTRAND GUAY / AFP

The third wave of the Coronavirus pandemic seems to have reached its peak for now, according to experts from the Covid 19 forecast consortium, the Wiener Zeitung newspaper reports.

 

Hospitals to remain at “critical levels” for next two weeks

However, even if the number of new infections – with the exception of Vorarlberg – continues to decline across all states, this does not mean any rapid relief for the hospitals, the consortium warns, as there is a time lag between a fall in infections and reduced pressure in intensive care units. 

Vorarlberg is the only one of Austria’s states to open its outside dining and events, and the only state apart from Carinthia seeing a rise in infections.

The scientists predict there will be an average of 2,300 new coronavirus infections every day until Wednesday, April 21st, when it will drop to around 2,200 new infections.

The seven-day incidence will fall to 180 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. It is currently at 210.3 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. 

Intensive care levels also approach critical levels in Upper Austria and Vorarlberg

The consortium predicts the situation with intensive care beds in Vienna, Burgenland and Lower Austria will remain critical until around April 28th.

It also warns that Upper Austria and Vorarlberg may reach critical levels in their intensive care units. 

A “critical level” is defined as more than a third of intensive care beds being occupied by people suffering from Covid 19.

Above the threshold of 33 percent of beds, coronavirus patients begin to “compete” with other intensive care patients, the  Wiener Zeitung newspaper reports. 

In Upper Austria, 30 percent of the intensive care beds are occupied with Covid 19 sufferers and in Vorarlberg 17 percent.

R-Rate now below one

According to the consortium, across Austria the number of reproductions has approached 0.94 in the past few days, broadcaster ORF reports.

This means that each infected person in Austria is currently infecting less than one other person, eventually leading to a drop in infections.

Vaccination is starting to have ‘measurable effect’

Another positive sign is the number of recovered and vaccinated people in Austria is increasing. According to the experts, 20 to 35 percent of the population could now be immune from the coronavirus. This is beginning to have a “measurable effect” on the dynamics of the infection, according to the experts’ analysis.

The first 100,000 doses of additional Biontech/Pfizer vaccines will arrive in Austria in eleven days, according to Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. 

He claims three quarters of the adult population could be vaccinated at least once by the end of June.

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VIENNA

What’s on: Five things to do in Vienna this weekend

Vienna is full of events, places to visit and great new restaurants to try out. So if you are overwhelmed with the possibilities or just wondering where you can find a musical about a famous British novel, here are some ideas.

What's on: Five things to do in Vienna this weekend

REBECCA

There are few better ways of learning German than just getting immersed in a book, play or movie in the language – but one that you are very familiar with the story and characters.

Vienna now has the perfect opportunity for those who want to practise their German by following the stories of the ‘new” Mrs. de Winter, her wealthy husband, the sinister Mrs Danvers and the infamous Manderley.

Rebecca, based on the novel of the same name by Daphne du Maurier, premieres at the Raimund Theater on Thursday, September 22nd, and people can experience the musical thriller live from Tuesday to Sunday.

You can find more information here.

Vienna central cemetery

Photo by Zdeněk Macháček on Unsplash

Vienna’s central cemetery

The Wiener Zentralfriedhof is one of the largest in the world and certainly the most well-known in the Austrian capital. It is the resting place of famous people such as Beethoven and Falco, but its landscape is also home to impressive flora and fauna (you can even see deer grazing by).

The Zentralfriedhof is particularly interesting during the moody autumn months when leaves turn yellow and the light is even more beautiful. You can visit every day from 7 am to 6 pm, but tours and certain parts of the cemetery have different hours.

You can find more information here.

(Copyright MA 49 / Fürthner)

Weinwandertag

During an early autumn weekend, thousands of Viennese and people from other parts of Austria participate in the city’s Wine Hiking tradition, which is precisely what it sounds like: walking around vineyards and trying out different wines and food.

It’s a great way to celebrate the arrival of autumn (and the new wine season) in a very Austrian way: outdoors, with friends and family, and with traditional drinks and food. You can take four different hikes (each with varying choices of routes). The trails are senior and child friendly.

You can find more information here.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Al Zaytouna Restaurant (@alzaytouna_restaurant)

Al Zaytouna

Al Zaytouna, which means “the olive tree” in Arabic, is one of the best restaurants for those seeking Lebanese cuisine in Vienna. There are many choices of dishes, including vegan and vegetarian, prepared with tasty Mediterranean herbs and olive oil.

Classic Arabic desserts finish off the night perfectly. The lovely-decorated restaurant (complete with a Schanigarten) is located in the 3rd district.

You can find more information here.

Austria’s Oktoberfest, the Viennese Kaiser Wiesn, is back. (Pressefotos © Stefan Joham)

Vienna Oktoberfest

Vienna’s largest Oktoberfest, the Kaiser Wiesn in Wiener Prater, is back with festivities, beer tapping and live acts.

From the opening until October 9th, the Kaiser Wiesn is open daily from 11:30 am – the Kaisernacht starts at 6:30 pm in the three large festival tents and offers a varied programme with national and international music and pop acts.

You can find more information here.

Do you know any other cool events happening in Vienna during the weekends? You can email us at [email protected] to share your tips and suggestions.

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