Berlin - Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) has triggered wave of protest with his draft for “law to strengthen rehabilitation and intensive care provision in statutory health insurance”.
On the website, more than 100,000 people signed the petition “Leave those in need of care at home! Stop the Intensive Care Strengthening Act "signed. The signatures were handed over at the ministry today.
Spahn emphasizes that he wants to ensure that ventilators after the hospital stay be better looked after. “And everything should be done to wean them off artificial ventilation as quickly as possible.” Business at the expense of seriously ill people should also be prevented.
But then comes the crucial point for critics: “Out of the hospital Intensive care should generally be provided in inpatient care facilities and specialized residential units, ”it says. In future, patients are to be accommodated either in fully inpatient care facilities or in special intensive care residential units. However, this does not apply to patients under the age of 18.
Continue to protest
From the point of view of affected associations such as the action alliance, this is an absurdity. She also criticizes. “There is no doubt that outpatient intensive care must be of high quality,” said CEO Eugen Brysch. These seriously ill patients are extremely vulnerable.
Criminals in this lucrative industry must be stopped. But politicians intervene too strongly in the freedom of seriously ill people and largely prevent intensive care within their own four walls.
The company health insurance funds make similar statement. "It is an open secret that about 60 to 70 percent of the estimated 15,000 to 30,000 ventilated patients who are cared for at home or in shared apartments for ventilation could be weaned from artificial ventilation," explained Franz Knieps, chairman of the BKK umbrella association.
However, it must also be clear that the right to self-determination is not restricted when choosing the supply location, said Knieps. "Here the legal text has to be specified again."
According to the company health insurance funds, the number of intensive care services increased by almost 25 percent between January 2014 and December 2016 alone, and thus disproportionately increased compared to nursing services. The costs for intensive care amount to 15,000 to 20,000 euros per insured per month. Projected nationwide, these are two to four billion euros per year.
In view of the protest, the ministry is at least signaling thoughtfulness.In an answer to letter from person concerned, spokesman assured that the outpatient intensive care system would be significantly improved and that abuse would be combated where "patients are poorly cared for over 24 hours / 7 days week in sometimes dubious structures for lot of money". They want to keep the self-determined choice of whereabouts.
In addition, those in need of care who do not need 24-hour care by nurse are not affected. Patients who participate in social life with 24-hour intensive care by nurse could also continue to be entitled to care at home.