Panel proposes major overhaul of German hospital financing

BERLIN — An skilled panel unveiled a proposal Tuesday for a major overhaul of Germany’s system for funding hospitals that it says would promote high quality over amount, ending what some described as a “hamster wheel” system the place clinics tried to carry out as many procedures as potential.

The government-appointed panel of impartial specialists recommended placing hospitals into three classes, relying on the extent of care they supply, with totally different necessities and financing techniques for every.

The objective is to make sure sufferers have entry to major care close to their properties, whereas concentrating specialist remedy in hospitals with high experience, Health Minister Karl Lauterbach stated.

“At the moment mediocrity and quantity are honored too often,” he stated. “In future, quality and suitability alone should be the criteria for good care.”

Between 40-60% of hospital funding might be earmarked for the essential companies hospitals have to offer, whereas the remainder might be paid on a per-case foundation, in response to the proposal.

Germany has 50% extra hospital beds and coverings than its European neighbors, stated Dr. Tom Bschor, a Berlin-based physician who heads the panel. “Staff and money are being gobbled up by the hamster wheel of the current system.”

The new system, which the panel proposed phasing in over a five-year interval, is prone to face opposition from some lawmakers anxious concerning the impacts on their constituency hospitals.

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