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Sweeping patients' rights bill planned

The Local · 27 Dec 2010, 09:02

Published: 27 Dec 2010 09:02 GMT+01:00

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Jens Spahn, a health policy expert with Angela Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union, told Monday’s edition of daily Süddeutsche Zeitung that the government wanted to sharply improve the service provided by hospitals and doctors.

The government’s planned new medical care legislation – which it aims to enact in 2011 – would include strong financial incentives for hospitals to put only two patients in each room. At present, some patients have to share four to a room.

“That is simply no longer fair to the needs of people. It is an imposition on someone with cancer for instance.”

Hospitals would be offered incentives to reduce the number of beds in each room.

“Anyone who offers four-bed rooms will get less money,” Spahn said.

Specialists such as neurologists, dermatologists, gastroenterologists and obstetricians would have to book and stick to appointments within three weeks.

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The plan is likely to cause a storm of protest from the hospitals. Germany’s roughly 2,000 hospitals have long been suspected of holding two-bed rooms aside and prioritising them for private patients. Experts say this practice earns the nation’s hospitals an extra €300 million per year, Süddeutsche Zeitung reported.

The Local/dw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

13:37 December 27, 2010 by freechoice
so who will be paying for all these?
17:27 December 27, 2010 by michael4096
I am a great believer in improvement. But, this really isn't it...

3 weeks to wait for a specialist? Asking around, nobody has ever waited for more that 2 weeks

less than the current 4 beds to a room (or ward.) What other country guarentees even 4 beds or less per room for everybody, anytime... (and, going from 4 beds to 2 costs €40 per day - for everybody)

I'm sure that improvements can be made, and that pressure should be maintained to avoid complacency, but this is just more populist fear mongering.
18:30 December 27, 2010 by DepotCat
After all the improvements and you get a new health system, can we have the old German health system in the UK...Please.
20:03 December 27, 2010 by cain
once the PKV is eradicated, they'll have plenty of money to finance this.
22:46 December 27, 2010 by storymann
It"s all good
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