Measures concerning Coronavirus/Covid-19

The MFO is keeping a close eye on current developments and follows the instructions of the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, the Federal Ministry of Health, the Robert Koch Institut (RKI) and the World Health Organization. New guidelines and recommendations may very quickly result in the adjustment of our measures. Please inform yourself regularly on our website.

Recent updates:

  • 24 December 2021: Baden-Württemberg adapts test obligation for immunized people; FFP2 masks required indoors; regulation is valid from 27 December
  • 6 December 2021: Baden-Württemberg introduced 2G+ rule for events; proof of immunization and test is required (with exceptions)
  • 17 November 2021: State Health Office of Baden-Württemberg announces "alarm level"; non-immunized people need to be excluded from personal participation
  • 2 November 2021: State Health Office of Baden-Württemberg announces "warning level"; PCR-tests for non-immunized people are required
  • 16 September 2021: New regulation in Baden-Württemberg linking participation restrictions to  the degree of capacity utilization in hospitals and intensive care units

Contents:

Information for invitees in 2022

Although vaccinations are now being used in many countries, we are still faced with the pandemic. On the other hand, the MFO is open since end of June 2020 again and in the meantime we could gather a lot of experience with necessary modifications and adjustments.

We are prepared that the activity in 2022 where you are invited could also be affected by measures described below (travel restrictions, realization as a  hybrid workshop, hygiene measures and restricted capacity). For details, please see the explanation below and the links given there. Please read these websites carefully as a lot of questions are answered there (e.g. concerning safety distance, travel restrictions, participation in person or online, new deadlines in the invitation procedure ...). Please keep checking our websites in the coming months, we try hard to keep all relevant links current.

As the pandemic recedes we will try to progressively move back to the traditional workshop format with an emphasis on in-person participation.

Visiting restrictions

We ask all our guests to make a responsible decision about their visit at the MFO!

In case that you have fever, or respiratory symptoms, or other symptoms of a contagious disease, or if you had contacts with an infected person in the last 14 days, we urge you to cancel your participation and to inform us by email to admin@mfo.de as soon as possible! The MFO is forced to withdraw invitations to participants showing such symptoms, or having known contacts with an infected person, as the MFO is not allowed to host such persons at the institute! 

A valid proof that you are vaccinated against Covid-19 (with a vaccine approved in the EU) or recovered from a Covid-19 infection is required for your visit at the MFO. In addition, you need to carry proof that you have been tested against Sars-Cov-2. The test must have been carried out no more than 24 hours prior to your arrival in case of a rapid Covid-19 antigen test. In case of a PCR test, the test must have been carried out no more than 48 hours prior to your arrival. Kindly note, that the MFO is obliged to check the certificates (vaccination/recovery/test) of all arrivals. Persons who do not need an additional test certificate are:

  • fully vaccinated people who already received a booster vaccination
  • fully vaccinated people who received the last individual vaccination no more than three months ago
  • recovered people whose infection can be proven to have occurred no more than three months ago (the infection must be verified by laboratory diagnostics using nucleic acid detection / PCR test).

Please consider: The corona rules in the state of Baden-Württemberg take into account the degree of capacity utilization in hospitals and intensive care units when it comes to participation restrictions for non-immunized and immunized people. Recently,  the "alarm level II" has been announced which means that non-immunized persons need to be completely excluded from personal participation and immunized people need to be tested (with exceptions, see above). The State Health Office announces the entry of the respective level by publication on the Internet.

Please check the following sites to find out where PCR tests or rapid antigen tests can be passed: https://15minutentest.de, https://www.meincoronaschnelltest.de, or https://www.kvbawue.de/buerger/notfallpraxen/corona-anlaufstellen/corona-karte/. Note that it might be difficult to organize a test in Oberwolfach at short notice, due to the tense situation. We recommend to pass a test before arrival and to carry the proof with you.

Travel restrictions to Germany

Due to the pandemic, restrictions for entry into Germany from many countries apply. Persons entering must complete a digital entry registration (www.einreiseanmeldung.de). Depending on the place of departure, they also have to provide a negative test result or proof of immunity, and comply with quarantine regulations. Please check the current restrictions at the website of the Federal Foreign Office, directly before travelling.

The travel restrictions mentioned above refer to high risk areas and virus variant areas. Please note that the country of exit for the travel to Germany is relevant, not the affiliation or citizenship. See the website of the Robert-Koch Institute (RKI) for up-to-date information which also serves as an official list for the German government.

Please be aware, that the definition of high risk areas and virus variant areas may be changed very quickly, as well as travel regulations of the German government. All participants are urged to check these websites regularly, as the MFO has to reserve the right to withdraw an invitation to the concerned participants individually and at short-term, if mandated by the government. We kindly ask for your understanding.

General advice on travel arrangements

Please note that the MFO cannot foresee possible changes in future contact and travel restrictions by the government. Participants themselves are responsible to inquire about restrictions on travel to and from Germany; thus we strongly recommend to make travel arrangements flexible/refundable in case the Corona crisis continues or resurfaces in the future. We are sorry that we are not able to reimburse travel tickets which cannot be used because of force majeure. This also applies to grants. We would also like to inform you that currently many airlines and also the Deutsche Bahn offer free cancellation or rebooking of tickets (see the current list).

In case you need a valid test for traveling back, please check the following sites to find out where PCR tests or rapid antigen tests can be passed: https://15minutentest.de, https://www.meincoronaschnelltest.de, or https://www.kvbawue.de/buerger/notfallpraxen/corona-anlaufstellen/corona-karte/.

Oberwolfach Workshops in hybrid format

In accordance with the regulations of the German government due to the pandemic, the MFO is allowed to host research groups, workshops and seminars also during the pandemic. The allowed total capacity can be smaller than in pre-pandemic times and depends on current developments and rules (e.g. concerning distancing and hygiene).

As an example, in many weeks 2020-21 the MFO could host about 40 guest researchers in total at the MFO (e.g. 30 workshop participants and 10 persons in our long-term research programs). Sometimes these numbers were even larger - also in some weeks where the pandemic development was strong.

In agreement with the workshop organizers, the MFO realizes workshops in a hybrid format (mixed personal/online) - please read the details there.

Read more...

Hygiene measures

In accordance with general government rules, the MFO has developed hygiene measures for hand desinfection, accommodation, lecture halls and individual meal services to make such an activity as safe as possible. In particular, please note, that masks (FFP2 or comparable) are required in all public areas of the buildings, unless you are seated in a dedicated area (e.g. in the lecture hall or in the dining hall) with adequate distance.

For institutional travel applications we provide a summary of the most important measures (in German) together with a statement of our Scientific Advisory Board.

Because of the hygiene measures, the total capacity of the MFO is restricted to 30 participants in person for each workshop (15 for a half workshop, 10 for a mini-workshop), plus 10 persons visiting the MFO as long-term researchers (Oberwolfach Research Fellows, Research in Pairs or Leibniz Fellows).

Please note that our capacity for accompanying persons is very restricted at the moment and that the new hygiene measures do not allow to use the dining area as a lounge, unfortunately. Thus we recommend not to travel with an accompanying person to Oberwolfach.

Kindly note, that due to the current situation we are unable to accomodate families with children. Nevertheless, we can help to find a holiday home close to the institute for an accompanying person and the children. Unfortunately, until further notice it is also not possible to find a nanny. Therefore, our usual offers for children at the MFO are not valid until further notice and can only be requested again when the situation in Germany has normalized further. We kindly ask for your understanding.

Oberwolfach Research Fellows

The focus of the Oberwolfach Research Fellows (OWRF) program is to bring together small groups of researchers to carry out joint research in the stimulating atmosphere of the Oberwolfach Institute. The OWRF program evolved in 2020-21 as a flexibilisation from the former Research in Pairs (RiP) program. Read more...