ÄDoctors’ organizations are calling for additional financial aid for hospitals in the short term in order to avert bankruptcies. “The risk of insolvency for many clinics increases with exploding costs, a shortage of staff and the resulting reduction in the number of cases,” says a letter from the Marburg Federation and the Association of Senior Hospital Doctors (VlK) to Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) and his state colleagues, which the “New Osnabrücker Newspaper” from Monday is available. The reform of the hospital landscape planned by Lauterbach will only succeed if a hospital death is averted in the meantime. “Therefore, a resumption of the financial stabilization measures of the clinics by the federal, state and health insurance companies is the order of the day.”
Only on Tuesday did the hospital company warn that according to a new survey, only six percent of hospitals describe their current economic situation as good. Only 20 percent expected a positive result for 2022.
Lauterbach promised hospitals billions in support in November in view of inflation and high energy costs. He is also planning a major reform to free the clinics from economic pressure on patients and staff. The basis for the legislative plans should be the concept of a government commission that recommends significant changes to the system of remuneration via flat rates for treatment cases. The experts suggest that clinics be rewarded according to new criteria – including a guaranteed share for the provision of services.
According to the newspaper report, the medical associations are hoping for a signal from the next meeting of health ministers this week. In the debate about Lauterbach’s far-reaching reform proposals, the current plight of the clinics is in danger of being pushed into the background, the Marburger Bund and VlK fear.
In the long term, the bureaucratic burden would have to be reduced to what is absolutely necessary. “Having the documentation load in half would make the hourly equivalent of 32,000 full-time positions available for patient care in the medical field alone,” according to the calculations of the Marburger Bund and VlK.