The vaccination campaign against the coronavirus in Germany is progressing – albeit slowly. However, the DAX companies continue to support the federal government’s strategy and would also like to have their own employees vaccinated. This was the result of a survey by the “Handelsblatt” among the 30 largest corporations in Germany. Some companies even go a step further and, like Volkswagen, want to set up an in-house corona vaccination center. A vaccination bonus is currently out of the question for many. Nevertheless, there could be restrictions for unvaccinated employees in some corporations.
Companies therefore have a major impact on immunizing the population. 12,000 company doctors have access to 45 million employees, according to the Association of Company Doctors. Due to the annual flu vaccinations, appropriate infrastructures have already been set up in many companies.
For the DAX companies, the vaccination of the workforce cannot take place fast enough: the more vaccinations are made in the company, the faster production can be restarted. Employees would then have to work less in the home office and protective measures in the companies could be relaxed again.
The insurance group Allianz would like to offer its employees a vaccination offer “with a corona vaccine with high effectiveness”, says the “Handelsblatt”. This currently means vaccination with the vaccines from Moderna or Biontech, which are said to be more effective than other vaccines.
But can companies decide which vaccines are made available to them? Annette Wahl-Wachendorf, Vice President of the Association of Company Doctors, does not assume this. According to her, the first vaccinations could only take place in the factories in the summer. According to their own statements, BASF and Vonovia want to vaccinate the relatives of the employees at the same time.
Corporations rule out vaccination premiums
Vaccination premiums are still a much discussed topic. In the USA, Aldi pays employees who are vaccinated two extra hourly salaries. According to the company, Lidl even has a one-time fee of 200 US dollars. In the United States, Amazon would also like to pay employees $ 40 per vaccination dose, reports the “Handelsblatt”.
In Germany, such extra premiums are generally also possible. Companies are allowed to pay their employees special payments of up to 1,500 euros in connection with the corona crisis until June 30 – and all of this tax-free.
In this country, however, the companies are initially relying on information campaigns. Most companies agree: Unvaccinated people must not be disadvantaged compared to vaccinated colleagues. BMW is not planning any “in-house privileges for vaccinated employees or restrictions for non-vaccinated employees”, says the “Handelsblatt”.
However, not all Dax companies seem to agree on this. Bayer has not yet made a final decision on the subject. Vonovia is not planning any consequences under labor law for unvaccinated employees, but these could be excluded from company parties in the future, said a company spokesman for the “Handelsblatt”.
However, it is also clear that the corporations do not have to pay for the vaccines. The federal government pays the costs, says the company doctor Wahl-Wachendorf. However, this also means that the corporations have to submit to the federal government’s vaccination plan. Only when enough vaccine is available can companies vaccinate their employees.