Berlin - German research to combat SARS-CoV-2 should be better organized. For this purpose, Federal Research Minister Anja Karliczek (CDU) is providing 150 million euros for network of university medicine, which is to connect the German university clinics as well as non-university research institutions. The initiative came from the Chairman of the Board of Management Heyo K. Kroemer and the Director of Charité Virology, Christian Drosten.
Charité - Universitätsmedizin Berlin also wants to coordinate the initiative. In order to learn from each other and to find the most effective concepts, national task force from politics and science will also be founded, in which, in addition to their house, they will also be involved, explained Karliczek today in Berlin. It serves to control and coordinate between university medicine and politics. However, other scientific networks should also be included.
Unite the German research system on one issue< p> "The German university hospitals are in an outstanding position in the development of these ideas and concepts," emphasized Kroemer today in Berlin. They want to use this expertise even more. The Charité boss was optimistic that it could succeed in uniting the German research system behind one question. All national forces should be pooled. University clinics would have the advantage that patient care would go hand in hand with research on tests, treatment methods and vaccines.
The initiative is intended to bring together the action plans, diagnostic and treatment strategies of as many German university hospitals as possible be evaluated. As result, structures and processes should be created in the clinics that ensure the best possible care for those suffering from COVID-19.
Collect data from all university clinics on COVID-19 patients in the future
The data of the treated COVID-19 patients are to be systematically recorded at all university clinics and bundled in database in order to merge the medical histories and the data on the constitution of the sick. According to the estimates of the virologist of the Berlin Charité, Christian Drosten, are currently in Germany carried out around 500,000 tests for coronavirus infection per week.
"These many tests are also the reason why we in Germany currently have so few deaths compared to the number of people infected," Drosten said today the press. There is an extremely large amount of laboratory diagnostics in Germany. “Laboratory medicine in Germany is still very close to the craft,” he praised. German laboratory doctors could set up the tests themselves according to “prescription”.
The professional exchange makes the difference
The university clinics could have carried out corona tests at the end of January - and were in direct professional exchange with doctors and sick people, reported Drosten. “The local laboratories in the area benefit directly from the fact that there is regional lighthouse that is one step ahead. This regional proximity makes the difference. ”
Testing of entire population groups can be expected soon, says Drosten. However, this must be well planned. It also takes few weeks to set up these cohort tests. However, antibody tests are currently being planned. "The first companies can produce and already offer them," said the virologist.
All German university hospitals should belong to the research alliance and share their plans and strategies for research approaches and therapies not only in the current corona pandemic, but also in future crises .
“University medicine is currently playing an outstanding role in coping with the corona pandemic. This applies to both research into COVID-19 and the care of sick patients. It is good and necessary that this role is also politically recognized and financially supported ", said Michael Albrecht, 1st Chairman of the Association of University Hospitals in Germany (VUD).
Also the President of the Medical Faculty Conference (), Matthias Frosch, stands behind the initiative: “As university medicine, we are able to collect, analyze and share knowledge that we gain from research and treatment of COVID-19, so that they can quickly lead to the best possible treatment across the board lead, ”he emphasized.