Most people may currently have the impression that the corona pandemic is over. But since the beginning of June, the number of infections has been increasing again in Germany, and it is unlikely to get any better in the fall. In every pandemic, the more people get tested, the better. And free citizen tests are an important contribution to this.

If you had to pay for corona tests, too many would stay away. Poor people in particular, who are now suffering particularly from price increases, would have to do without tests. Many corona cases went undetected, especially among infected people without symptoms and among those who had been vaccinated. The number of test centers is then likely to decrease, which would make them even more difficult to reach.

If the state saves on testing, it risks disproportionately higher costs from doctor visits and treatments. And no one should think that vaccination skeptics can be persuaded to get vaccinated by paying for tests. Their number is fairly stable. They would probably only radicalize themselves. Nobody can be interested in that.

The author is vaccinated.

Even corona deniers and zero-covid disciples should agree on one point: Germany is currently spending too much money rather than too little. It will save time. The mass free corona tests, which have cost the federal government more than 13.3 billion euros so far, would be a good start.

One thing is clear: the virus will never go away. Sooner or later, citizens will have to pay for the tests themselves anyway; the notion that the state will support three test centers in every neighborhood for the next thousand years is simply nonsensical (and, given the criminal behavior in many of these facilities, rather worrying). The good news: This will have little impact on the willingness to test. Test centers are already closing in droves: Hardly anyone comes, despite being free. People are beginning to adapt to Corona individually. Even without state paternalism, they know when a test makes sense and act accordingly. This is more efficient – ​​for everyone involved.

After inserting a cotton swab into his nostril, the author always has to sneeze exactly seven times.