• Germany edition
 
Doctor 'yoga-bonus' leaves coalition tense
Photo: DPA

Doctor 'yoga-bonus' leaves coalition tense

Published: 07 Apr 2012 16:19 GMT+02:00
Updated: 07 Apr 2012 16:19 GMT+02:00

Health Minister Daniel Bahr, of the FDP, has floated the idea of paying extra to doctors who promote activities such as yoga, Nordic walking or massage therapy to their patients.

“Prevention is a varied topic and it makes sense to integrate it into a doctor’s approach,” said a ministry spokesman.

The intention is to motivate doctors to think more widely about preventative treatment for their patients, but the pro-business party’s plan has triggered outcry from other politicians - and insurance companies.

Florian Lanz, spokesman from the statutory health insurance organisation, GKV, said he opposed the idea. Some doctors earn up to €160,000 putting them among the top earners in Germany and should not need additional ways to make more money.

“We want doctors to be looking after ill people who really need their help, like those with diabetes or cancer,” he told Die Welt daily newspaper.

FDP party leader Philipp Rösler, came up with the idea and passed it down to Bahr when he moved from the position of Minister for Health, the paper said.

It has not been accepted by Chancellor Merkel’s conservatives, the main partner in the coalition, and according to reports from the Berliner Zeitung on Saturday they would be writing a proposal to contradict the FDP’s idea.

According to the paper they, like the GKV, feel giving doctors more money is unnecessary and that a more wide-reaching approach is needed to better prevent illness.

DPA/The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

16:41 April 7, 2012 by pepsionice
Here's the deal...having spent fifteen years living in Germany and having taken my son to the German doctor on a number of occasions. You have a fair number of folks who show up on a monthly basis....with no real health issues other than pains associated with getting older. German doctors will quietly admit that they give out a fair number of prescriptions....that aren't anything other than vitamin doses, and that a small portion of their customer base really aren't ill enough to come and waste their time at the office. If they could convince these folks to go off to some Yoga instructor....it'd be a better use of doctor time, if you ask me. I realize this is a waste of medical funding....but everyone "thinks" they are getting help, and that's all that matters usually.
00:26 April 8, 2012 by Jazzineva
Typical FDP out to give money to doctors who already have it. I already go to a doctor who regularly recommends holistic activities but they cost me too much money because I have a chronic illness which makes it very difficult to work. A better solution would be to put the same money into deductions for the patients to participate in these very helpful preventative offerings like Yoga, Tai Chi, PMR, Nordic Walking, etc. Regardless, I still find the health care offerings and encouragement for preventative measures here in Germany far, far better than the system in the United States.
Today's headlines
Nazi-stolen painting put on display, sort of
The Wiesbaden Museum in Hessen. Photo: DPA

Nazi-stolen painting put on display, sort of

The Wiesbaden Museum was once a collection house for art stolen from Jewish owners by the Nazi. With one painting, they hope to right at least one wrong while bringing awareness to its ongoing restitution work. READ  

JobTalk Germany
When should interns demand to get paid?

When should interns demand to get paid?

After a woman was denied pay for working at a supermarket as an 'intern' for eight months with no wages, The Local looks at the warning signs for abusive internships. READ  

Single parents, common law families on rise
Photo: DPA

Single parents, common law families on rise

The German family structure is changing, with nearly a third of every family no longer living in the "classic model" and big differences in what family looks like in the former East and West, statistics agency Destatis announced on Monday. READ  

Four arrested in raids against Isis
Photo: DPA

Four arrested in raids against Isis

Police raided 15 homes across Germany over the weekend and arrested four suspected supporters of the Islamic State (Isis). They are alleged to have smuggled a teenager and thousands of winter military clothes to the terrorist group's frontlines. READ  

Munich Refugee Crisis
'There's no room but we have nowhere else to go'
Hassan, pictured outside the Bayernkaserne with two of his children, arrived in Munich from Syria. Photo: Mariane Schroeder

'There's no room but we have nowhere else to go'

Around 300 refugees are arriving in Munich each day, but accommodation centres are full. With authorities struggling for answers, The Local meets those at the sharp end of the crisis. READ  

Train Strike
Buses up prices, football fans brawl, trains return
Photo: DPA

Buses up prices, football fans brawl, trains return

UPDATE: Deutsche Bahn trains are chugging along again after a 50-hour train strike cost the service "tens of millions" and brought travel headaches across the country, leaving millions of passengers struggling for transportation over the weekend as well as at least one mass brawl in its tracks. READ  

Foreigner toll to hit motorways only
Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt. Photo: DPA

Foreigner toll to hit motorways only

Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt plans to limit his road toll for foreigners initially to motorways only, Spiegel reported on Sunday. READ  

Criminals blow Berlin Sparkasse wide open
The damaged bank branch. Photo: DPA

Criminals blow Berlin Sparkasse wide open

Criminals robbed a Berliner Sparkasse bank branch early on Sunday morning - using a bomb. READ  

French retread path to Berlin finance ministry
French Economy and Finance Ministers Emmanuel Macron (l) and Michel Sapin. Photo: DPA

French retread path to Berlin finance ministry

French and German ministers are due to meet on Monday to discuss ways of boosting growth in Europe's two biggest economies, as Paris called on Berlin to step up investment. READ  

Lufthansa pilots to strike for 35 hours
Grounded. Photo: DPA

Lufthansa pilots to strike for 35 hours

UPDATE: Pilots' union Cockpit has called a new 35-hour walkout at Lufthansa starting Monday, hours after a weekend-long rail strike finished. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: DPA
Culture
Can you top our history quiz leaderboard?
Photo: Facebook
Society
German motorcycle gang joins Isis fight
Photo: DPA
Politics
UKIP ‘seeks EU pact’ with German satirical party
Photo: DPA
Travel
This is the man who has stopped Germany's trains
Photo: Shutterstock
Business & Money
Expats: Should I stay or should I go?
Photo: DPA
Gallery
PHOTOS: World's biggest erotic fair opens in Berlin
Photo: DPA/Shutterstock
Gallery
11 things Germans are afraid of...
Photo: Shutterstock
Business & Money
Which expat foods do you miss the most?
Sponsored Article
International School on the Rhine: a legacy
Photo: Shutterstock
Business & Money
How to get hired at a Berlin startup
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The ten richest people in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Sponsored Article
Bilingual education from nursery to graduation at Phorms
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,441
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd