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Health: The federal and state governments are again discussing hospital reform

Health: The federal and state governments are again discussing hospital reform

For months there has been a tough struggle for innovations for the network of clinics – in terms of financing and requirements for treatment quality. Is the project making further progress?

Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) again discussed the planned realignment of hospitals in Germany with the heads of the federal states today. There is now a draft law for this. Lauterbach “finally” submitted his draft at the weekend, Bavaria’s department head Judith Gerlach (CSU) told the “Augsburger Allgemeine” before the talks.

The federal states still see an urgent need for change in many areas. “I expect Lauterbach to take the concerns and needs of the states seriously.” The reform plans aim to change the remuneration with flat rates for treatment cases in order to relieve clinics from financial pressure to deal with an increasing number of cases.

In the future, they should receive 60 percent of the remuneration just for holding offers. The basis for financing by the health insurance companies should be more precisely defined service groups. They are intended to ensure uniform quality standards.

Health insurance company: “No further compromises in quality”

The CEO of the Barmer health insurance company, Christoph Straub, warned: “There should be no further compromises in quality when coordinating with the federal states.” There is a risk that what remains of the much-heralded reform is purely a financial reform. “This threatens to bring enormous costs to the system and those with statutory health insurance, without the urgently needed quality and structural changes actually being tackled.”

Among other things, Bavaria is committed to ensuring that the states are given the opportunity to deviate from the nationwide structural requirements in order to be able to guarantee security of supply, said Gerlach. “With the current rigid requirements and the planned time limits, the hospital planning competence of the states is massively impaired.”

The federal-state group has met several times in recent months for difficult discussions. There are various criticisms of the legislative plans among the states, but according to Lauterbach, they should no longer be designed in such a way that they require approval in the Federal Council. The minister had stated that the aim was for the Federal Cabinet to deal with the plans in the coming week. The states and the clinics are also demanding rapid additional financial aid before the planned major reform.

Source: Stern

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