A surge of coronavirus cases sweeping Germany has triggered a national emergency, according to Health Minister Jens Spahn, who said that the situation is now more serious than it was a week ago. "We are in a national emergency," he said.

The coronavirus situation in Germany is so serious that a lockdown cannot be ruled out, even for those who have been vaccinated, the health minister said, as Austria announced that it would return to full lockdown on Monday.

"We are currently in a situation where we can't rule anything out," Spahn said.

The thought of a German lockdown sent markets into a tailspin, with bond yields becoming negative and the euro and stock markets plummeting.

Austria will be the first country in Western Europe to reimpose a full lockdown this autumn in response to a new wave of outbreaks, requiring vaccination of the whole population by February.

Coronavirus is now a ′worldwide pandemic,′ German health minister says | News | DW | 04.03.2020

On Friday, Germany reported 52,970 new coronavirus cases and 201 deaths, bringing the overall number of coronavirus deaths to 98,739.

Chancellor Angela Merkel stated on Thursday that in locations where hospitals are dangerously overburdened with COVID-19 patients, substantial parts of public life would be restricted to individuals who have been vaccinated or have recovered from the illness.

The new coronavirus regulations are anticipated to be approved by Germany's upper house of parliament on Friday.

Spahn also stated that the health ministry was in talks with Pfizer and other companies about ordering COVID-19 medications.