“Quite relaxed” – this is how the vaccination campaign in Butzbach in the Wetterau began on Sunday. There is no talk of a state of emergency like in Babenhausen in mid-June, at least in the morning in the old town of Butzbach. First, the queue of people waiting quietly runs about 300 meters from Charlotte Michaeli’s practice along the church square and the old city wall in Krachbaumgasse. From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., 1,000 doses of the Johnson & Johnson product are to be inoculated. Those wishing to be vaccinated do not have to register.
The police directs those interested to the end of the line. As a precaution, they ordered another street to be closed shortly after 9 a.m. so that those waiting could be directed into the pedestrian zone if necessary. But 30 minutes later the queue is even shorter than before. One officer suspects that many want to enjoy their breakfast in peace before they set off.
“Reach as many people as possible easily”
The action itself was organized at short notice. The Butzbach pharmacist Joachim Fink announced the delivery a week ago, says a helper. Doctor Michaeli took over the vaccination campaign. “The aim was to reach as many people as possible with easy access,” says a municipal employee who helps on the spot. The questionnaires could be issued in six different languages. Some refugees have agreed to act as translators. “Maybe I could make allergies understandable, but if someone has a blood clotting disorder, a translator helps a lot,” says the helper in a good mood.
The campaign was announced both in the local press and on social media. The longest journey was probably made by two friends who had set off from Konstanz on Lake Constance in the early hours of the morning to get the vaccine. On the other hand, there is no mention of campers at night in front of the practice. Helping hands pour coffee and water to those waiting. The mood is calm and serene.
Documents to be filled out
There are fairground benches in front of the practice so that those waiting can rest. But nobody sits there in the morning, the benches are used more as a writing aid to fill out the required documents. Volunteers, including from the city of Butzbach, are standing in a tent and have preprinted all of the documents. Other helpers approach those waiting in line, answer questions, obtain forms and distribute green stickers that are attached to clothing and identify the person willing to be vaccinated. They also have vaccination certificates in store if necessary.
At the entrance to the practice, other helpers check that all documents are complete. Then those waiting are allowed to enter to line up on one of the three vaccination streets. Those who have been vaccinated can stay in the courtyard for 15 minutes and then leave the practice via the back exit.