• Germany edition
 
Doctors' group admits widespread corruption
Photo: DPA

Doctors' group admits widespread corruption

Published: 13 Jan 2013 14:52 GMT+01:00
Updated: 13 Jan 2013 14:52 GMT+01:00

Corruption among German doctors is more prevalent than previously thought, according to a report due to be published on Monday, with nearly 1,000 being investigated in recent years.

The German Medical Association has investigated just under 1,000 doctors suspected of corruption over the past few years, head of the association Frank Ulrich Montgomery told Der Spiegel news magazine.

Over half of the investigations concerned doctors accused of accepting bribes from Israeli-owned pharmaceutical Ratiopharm in exchange for prescribing their patients the firm's drugs – something Montgomery said was “clearly prohibited” under professional codes of practice.

“The Medical Association punished 163 Ratiopharm doctors after state prosecutors made the files available to us,” said Montogomery, who called for a change in the law to encourage this kind of cooperation enforcing professional law for doctors.

Montgomery also demanded more investigative powers for the Medical Association itself, so that it could “conduct searches very early on and confiscate files.”

But statutory health insurance companies said on Sunday they would oppose more powers for the professional association and demanded that politicians intervene.

“Corruption is not a minor offence which doctors can regulate amongst themselves” said Florian Lanz, spokesman of the GKV National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds."When the medical association demands police powers it has to be an alarm call for legislators,” he added.

Montgomery's comments confirming the scale of corruption among doctors came after a series of embarrassing revelations about doctors accepting bribes and manipulating waiting lists, which kick-started a debate about whether a new law is needed to reinforce doctors' ethics.

Montgomery said he regretted the damage the recent debate had had on the profession's image. “This ongoing corruption debate is a thorn in our flesh which is massively damaging the reputation of my profession,” he told the magazine.

DAPD/The Local/jlb

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

16:21 January 13, 2013 by raandy
I have a friend that is a rep for a pharmaceutical company in the USA and it has always been their practice to give the doc free meds, tickets, small junkets, items , green fees ect , nothing new here.

Manipulating waiting list is not the same as pushing a pharmaceutical companies meds,however, and should be taken very seriously.
19:21 January 13, 2013 by pepsionice
If someone came up and just offered a seven-day all-expenses paid trip to Italy once a year....I'd probably do the same thing. If you look at the salary structure that was tossed onto doctors....there's not much of an incentive NOT to do something like this.
20:55 January 13, 2013 by coffmap8
I am a pay patient at a dental implant group in Munich. They have really screwed up my mouth and the charges make no sense. Their product broke and I am paying? The technician screwed up the mold and I am paying. They do not fit right. I am paying. One side he had to grind down to bricksbecause it was too high. and the other side is like the fijords so deep my cheek gets caught in the sharp edges. I have to pay this bill or what other recourse do I have?. This has been and awful experience and they want me to pay over 10,000 euros!
04:54 January 14, 2013 by munir akhtar
this practice is now worldover. From simple medical practitioners to renouned sugeons all are involved volentarily or otherwise. It needs ammendments in local laws and international law to put down this practice and lavy heavy pannelties on doctors as well as pharmaceuticals / supplies / marketing agencies. This practice is not only putiing burden on individuals but also to governments for importing specific drugs and paying subsidies from taxpayer's
09:46 January 14, 2013 by gkh50
@coffmap8. The industry does not want people to know, there is a high failure rate for dental implants. The implant companies, actually give the dentists a high & of free implants and drill bits (drill bits are free).

Take it to your insurance company.
Today's headlines
Ex-minister jailed over F1 race track scandal
Ingolf Deubel in court on Wednesday. Photo: DPA

Ex-minister jailed over F1 race track scandal

A former state finance minister was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison on Wednesday, having been found guilty of embezzling money in the scandal around the failed sale of the Nürburgring Formula One race track. READ () »

Upper Bavaria boasts lowest EU unemployment
A Bavarian worker works hard Photo: DPA

Upper Bavaria boasts lowest EU unemployment

Southern and central Bavaria have the lowest unemployment in the EU, according to figures released on Tuesday, with one business leader boasting the area has “de facto full employment”. READ () »

Thousands of tax evaders come forward to declare
Uli Hoeneß was jailed last month for tax evasion. Photo: DPA

Thousands of tax evaders come forward to declare

The number of German tax evaders who have self-declared to avoid prosecution trebled in the first quarter of 2014, figures published on Wednesday showed, with the rise put down to the "Uli Hoeneß effect". READ () »

Petition fails to remove WWII Russian tanks
One of the WWII Russian tanks near the Brandenburg Gate. Photo: DPA

Petition fails to remove WWII Russian tanks

The German government rejected on Wednesday a call by two newspapers to remove Russian tanks from a World War II memorial in central Berlin in protest against spiralling tensions in Ukraine. READ () »

Germany warns Ukraine talks must not fail
A Ukrainian policeman at a checkpoint in the eastern city of Kharkiv on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Germany warns Ukraine talks must not fail

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said on Wednesday that scheduled four-way talks on the Ukraine crisis must not fail, warning of "the threat of more dead and injured". READ () »

Olympic stadium could be giant polling station
Berlin's Olympic Stadium. Photo: DPA

Olympic stadium could be giant polling station

Berlin's Olympic stadium could become the world's biggest polling station if the Turkish community gets the go-ahead to vote there in Turkey’s general elections. READ () »

The Local List
Nine ways to celebrate Easter like a German
Photo: DPA

Nine ways to celebrate Easter like a German

From rolling wheels filled with burning hay down a hill, to waiting for a fox to bring eggs, The Local List this week looks at the nine best German Easter traditions. READ () »

Biology pupils find horse in kebab meat test
Horse? Photo: DPA

Biology pupils find horse in kebab meat test

Schoolchildren in western Germany came across horse meat while testing doner kebabs in a biology experiment. It comes a year after the horse meat scandal which showed much meat on sale in Europe had been mislabelled. READ () »

Private health insurance not worth it for workers
Photo: DPA

Private health insurance not worth it for workers

Thousands of employees paying into private health insurance in Germany get poor value for money, according to consumer experts - who recommend going private for just one group of workers. READ () »

'Free range' chicken farmer tricks customers
Free range? Photo: DPA

'Free range' chicken farmer tricks customers

UPDATE: A major producer of ethically certifified meat has admitted to defrauding thousands of customers for years by passing off conventional chicken as free range. But the brand said it took swift action to deal with the case. READ () »

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Photo: Galerie Bilderwelt
Gallery
World War I in colour photos
Photo: DPA
Society
'The mafia has infiltrated every sector in Germany'
Photo: DPA
Society
JobTalk: Why you should teach English in Germany
Photo: DPA
National
330,000 sign up against TV licence fee
Photo: DPA
Hamburg
School kids hospitalized after 'porno' party
Photo: Submitted
Frankfurt
'I'll get even with my old pal Schwarzenegger'
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The week in pictures: April 5th - April 11th
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Ten great inventions you (probably) didn't know were German
Photo: J. Arthur White
Berlin
Clashes in Berlin as refugees tear down their own camp
Photo: DPA
Gallery
Munich's baby polar bears are finally named
Photo: DPA
Gallery
The 10 best German employers to work for
CurrencyFair
Sponsored Article
Why it pays to avoid banks when making overseas transfers
Advertisement:
Mr. Lodge
Sponsored Article
How to find a furnished rental in Munich
Sponsored Article
How to make a lasting impression in business
Hult International Business School
Sponsored Article
What they don't teach you at Business School
Photo: DPA
Society
Nine jobs you can only do in Germany
Photo:ESL
Sponsored Article
How to integrate successfully in Germany
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
Photo: DPA
Features
The Local List Archive - Your guide to all things German
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

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

3,115
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd