Covid on January 17-23 | 500,000 Police Checks Conducted Since January 11

The coronavirus is shaping our lives. Here’s everything you need to know about COVID-19 in Austria this week – updated regularly.

January 19

News from Austria

  • Health Minister Mückstein supports the return of Wohnzimmertests (Livingroom tests) if the number of cases keeps increasing.
    • He is, however, still waiting for an official assessment from the Covid Crisis Coordination Commission (Gecko) before making a final decision, which could possibly be announced before the end of the week.
    • The commission is currently discussing new testing strategies.
    • “We are now at the beginning of the fifth wave and already have a fully developed testing apparatus, which will now only be adapted to current conditions,” said Mückstein in yesterdays press conference.
    • The minister expanded on his statement later that day in “ORF Report” adding that Wohnzimmertests will be reintroduced if the daily number of new cases starts approaching 25,000.
    • “We need to make sure that everyone in Austria who wants to go to work can easily and reliably get a COVID-19,” he added.
  • Austrian ministries reported 27,677 new infections in the last 24 hours.
    • The 7-day-incidence stands at 1,438.9 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
    • The value is highest in Tyrol (2,405.7) and lowest in Styria (838).
    • 13,956 people so far have died from COVID-19 in Austria.
    • Currently, 1,062 people are hospitalised due to a COVID-19 infection.
    • 193 people currently require intensive care.
Active casesHospitalizedIn intensive care (ICU)Deaths
Daily change+13,452+50-4+14
In percent+9.1%+4.9%-2%+0.1%
Daily TestsRecoveredTested Positive
Daily change+204,537+14,211+27,677
In percent+34.3%+1.1%+1.9%
Total vaccine jabs given17,181,952
– change since Friday+42,220
Number of people who got at least their 1st vaccine jab6,702,600
– in percentage of the population75.03%
– in percentage of the eligible population (aged 5+)78.86%
People fully immunized (valid vaccination certificate)6,415,025
– in percentage of the population71.82%
– in percentage of the eligible population (aged 5+)75.48%
Number of people who got the booster shot4,142,819
– in percentage of the population46.5%

Source: Austrian Ministry of Health, January 19, 2021

News From Elsewhere

  • France and Italy have reported a new record number of daily cases with around 465,000 and 228,000 infections respectively.
    • According to the French Ministry of Health, the official number of new infections on Tuesday evening was 464,769.
    • In the past weeks, the number of cases has risen dramatically.
    • The last recorded 7-day-incidence rate stands at 3,063 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
    • The Omicron variant has become the predominant mutation in the country.
    • In view of this, the French government is currently planning new campaigns to incentivise their citizens to get immunized and is tightening COVID-19 measures for the unvaccinated.
    • With the new measures in place, those who are not vaccinated won´t be able to enter restaurants, museums, attend any cultural events or use long-distance public transport.
    • Italy has also recorded the highest number of new infections since the start of the pandemic in February of 2020, according to the reports of the Italian Ministry of health.
    • The country has also had 434 covid-related deaths in a single day.
    • 1.48 people have been tested in the past 24 hours and 15.4 test results came back positive.
Bogdan Brkić
Originally from southern Serbia, he moved to Vienna in 2013 to study German Philology. He is an aspiring journalist whose passions include history, music and French pastries.

Current Status

If you live in Vienna, make sure to register for getting a vaccine against COVID-19 under  Here you can book your vaccination appointment.

The City of Vienna offers free vaccinations without an appointment to everyone – regardless of citizenship or insurance status – at multiple locations across the city. 

Vienna has reinstated a number of coronavirus restrictions for the fall. The Austrian government has presented a plan for schools and universities.  

Here’s an overview of where you can get tested for COVID-19 in Vienna and how the free PCR “gargle” tests at home work. 

If everything is a bit much for you or you experience domestic violence of any kind, here is our mental health resource article.


For current coronavirus numbers, check the website of Ministry of Health and the AGES dashboard.

The Austrian Ministry of Health also publishes daily vaccination statistics and a preview of scheduled deliveries.


The City of Vienna has compiled comprehensive information on questions and answers regarding coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease in English.

The Austrian Ministry of Health has put together FAQs on the coronavirus and also provides material to download on how to protect yourself and others from the disease, also in English.

Furthermore, the ministry will constantly update its German-language website with information on the number of people tested and cases of COVID-19 in Austria.


Health advice by telephone1450

If you show symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath, breathing difficulties) or fear that you are ill, stay at home and dial health number 1450 for further procedures (diagnostic clarification).

Coronavirus hotline AGES+43 0800 555 621

The Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES) answers questions about the coronavirus (general information on transmission, symptoms, prevention) 24 hours a day at +43 0800 555 621.

VKI hotline for travel law questions+43 0800 201 211

For legal questions concerning trips that have already been booked (e.g. whether a trip can be cancelled free of charge), the experts of the Association for Consumer Information (VKI) provide advice free of charge from Monday to Sunday between 09:00 and 15:00 at +43 0800 201 211.