In Brief: Berlin’s hospital association demonstrates to demand investment in the city’s hospital infrastructure

On Wednesday, Berlin’s hospital association demonstrated outside of the Rotes Rathaus to demand greater investment in hospital infrastructure. The managing director of the organization said that funds are needed for technical upgrades, more digitalization and increased staff, particularly nurses in Berlin hospitals.

Photo by Adhy Savala on Unsplash

 

An alliance of clinics, trade unions and the medical association held a rally in front of Berlin’s town hall, the Rotes Rathaus, on Wednesday calling on the Senate to invest more money in Berlin’s 60 hospitals and other health care facilities.

Marc Schreiner, Managing Director of Berlin’s Association of Hospitals, said with Berlin’s population steadily growing, the funds currently budgeted will not be enough.

“Berlin is a growing city. Every year about 25,000 new citizens are coming to Berlin, requiring more hospital infrastructure,” Schreiner said. “Berlin is also getting older, so the older society also requires more hospital infrastructure, and therefore we need more investment money.”

Schreiner said the funds are needed for technical upgrades, more digitalization and increased staff, particularly nurses. The association is calling for 350 million euros per year in new investments to upgrade health care facilities and improve conditions for patients and staff. That’s 150 million more than the Berlin Senate has budgeted for the next two years. Every year, hospitals here in Berlin treat around 900,000 patients.

Berlin’s Senator of the Interior Andreas Geisel has announced an increase in the number of police to patrol areas of Berlin known for drug trafficking. Some areas include Görlitzer Park in Kreuzberg and Warschauer Bridge in Friedrichshain, among other places.

Berlin’s CDU faction leader Burkard Dregger said more police won’t be effective if people are allowed to have large amounts of drugs, like marijuana, without facing charges. In an interview with rbb published in August, he said there should be a limit of zero grams allowed in Görlitzer and Hasenheide parks.

Currently, the public prosecutor’s office does not pursue criminal charges for individuals who have less than 15 grams of cannabis.

Workers in Germany are sick more frequently, according to the results from a parliamentary inquiry.

According to the study, the number of sick days of employees with statutory health insurance rose by 70 percent between 2008 and 2017. The most common reason: problems with the musculoskeletal system and connective tissue, such as slipped discs.

Mental illnesses and behavioral disorders have replaced respiratory diseases as the second most common cause of sick leave.

 

This news is brought to you in cooperation with Berliner Rundfunk.