Mülheim - "I promise you, we will not argue on the podium" - was the opening statement from the President of the (BÄK), Frank Ulrich Montgomery. Of the 150 or so listeners who gathered yesterday for an event organized by the Mülheim district office of the Medical Association of “100 days of the grand coalition”, none of them had expected that either. The second keynote speaker was the President of the, Rudolf Henke, to assess the government's activities. Here one could assume that there were agreed positions from the board of directors of the German Medical Association.
The BÄK President basically believes that not too much had happened in health policy in the first 100 days of the grand coalition good sign. Federal Minister of Health Hermann Gröhe (CDU) was an experienced politician, but not proven health expert when he took up the ministerial office. So it is to be rated positively if Gröhe does not rush to try new legal texts, but first familiarize himself intensively with the new matter. The Minister of Health is particularly committed to ethical issues, which is also expressed in the establishment of separate subdivision in the ministry.
Montgomery concentrated his assessment on the passages on health policy contained in the coalition agreement. On closer inspection, “there are lot of sensible things in there”. The BÄK President already described the start with the plea for the freelance of the medical profession as remarkable, and he also assessed the announced promotion of the branch in underserved regions positively. However, Montgomery is little more cautious about the new quality institute that is to be established within short time. "You don't create quality by managing it," he summed up his skepticism.
The subject of appointments seems to Montgomery meanwhile slipped into the populist corner. What is formulated in the coalition agreement is, however, quite reasonable. According to this, patients should get specialist appointment within four weeks on referral - period that seems to him quite feasible. Here, too, the new health minister reacted very prudently to the doctors: If you solve this yourself, you don't need law, he let them know Referral on the trip would be issued by specialist care.The BÄK President expressed criticism of the statements in the coalition agreement, in which it was announced that he wanted to ensure an equal division of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KVen) and the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians into general practitioner and specialist section. He even considers this to be unconstitutional, as it would not correspond to the majority situation in many KVs.
In his remarks, Rudolf Henke concentrated on the North Rhine perspective; In assessing the coalition agreement, he sees no overall differences to Montgomery. In particular, he had the historically grown lower remuneration of the NRW medical profession in mind. Here it must be ensured that what is paid into the statutory health insurance by the NRW citizens also reaches them. This applies equally to residents and hospitals. According to the coalition agreement, the existing injustices in terms of remuneration are to be reviewed. In the event of convergence, “in the end there will be no getting around state regulation,” Henke believes.
Despite the two-thirds majority in the grand coalition in the federal government, there will be no governance in hospital policy, Henke is certain. Because there is clear lack of corresponding majority in the Federal Council, so that difficult voting process is imminent. "The states will not be able to meet their investment responsibility for hospitals," emphasized the President of the North Rhine Medical Association.
Hospital planning must remain the responsibility of the states The problem will not be able to be solved otherwise than with national effort based on the model of the construction of the East. In the long term, however, hospital planning must remain the responsibility of the federal states; because only there one can react appropriately to the respective circumstances. The health insurance companies should definitely not be left with these responsibilities; because they would only wait for the opportunity to conclude individual contracts with selected clinics. The harmful consequences this would have can be seen at the rehabilitation clinics.