Beginning of the doctors’ strike: Numerous doctor’s practices closed until New Year’s Day in protest

Beginning of the doctors’ strike: Numerous doctor’s practices closed until New Year’s Day in protest

In protest against the Federal Health Minister’s plans Karl Lauterbach (SPD) thousands remain Doctor’s offices Closed for several days in Germany. The federal chairman of the Virchowbund, Dirk Heinrich, justified the practice closures by saying that Lauterbach “has not responded to previous protest measures”. Because of the pressure, he has now invited people to a crisis summit in January.

The Virchowbund, which represents general practitioners and specialists, as well as 23 other professional associations had the practices between Christmas and New Year called for strikes. However, the medical on-call service on 116 117 will remain in place.

The strikes took place in Berlin, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg and Bremen, among others, but also in smaller cities and in the countryside. Since the protest is followed by the weekend and New Year’s Day, the practices are not expected to reopen until January 2nd.

“We give ours Medical assistants free during this time – as a thank you for their hard work and as compensation because they have not received a state Corona bonus to date,” says the call for the “Practice in Need” campaign. Medicine is being “saved to waste”. Doctors’ practices are being “bled dry,” is how professional associations accuse politicians.

Services cut and waiting times long

Doctors had already protested against the government’s health policy by closing practices on October 3rd. Heinrich pointed out that the situation in the practices was getting worse and worse. Services would have to be cut, there would be long waiting times, and in many places there is already an admission freeze for new patients. At the end of the year, “the money is completely used up” in the practices.

A crisis summit is scheduled to take place at the Federal Ministry of Health in January. Lauterbach had plans Christmas criticized the practice closures. He told rbb that he understood the protests, but not that there would be a strike over the holidays. The minister pointed out that one in ten people is currently sick and people need care. “The demands of the medical profession are known, they do not need to be presented again,” Lauterbach said.

Health insurance companies and patient advocates criticize the strike

Criticism also came from the umbrella association of statutory health insurance (GKV). “If the medical profession has fallen out with health policy, then it is hardly the right way to simply close the practices on the bridge days,” said the spokesman for the leading association, Florian Lanz. “The patients are the least responsible.” Lanz also pointed out that there are currently “peak levels of respiratory diseases” in Germany.

The board of the Patient Protection Foundation, Eugen Brysch, said: “Even the German train drivers’ union is waiving between Christmas and At the beginning of the new year on strikes. That’s why it’s incomprehensible that there are calls for practice closures between the years.” Those who suffer are mainly old and weak people, and rural areas are particularly affected.

Brysch accused Lauterbach of showing “no initiative to stop the measures.” The minister must “remind the statutory health insurance associations of the security order”

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