Medical association warns of further Corona data blind spots

In the fight against the Corona pandemic, Germany urgently needs a better database, according to the German Medical Association. “Over the past two and a half years, we have experienced a real data blind spot, which has not been a good basis for rational decision-making,” said Klaus Reinhardt, president of the medical association, at the Funke Media Group.

Only when the true incidence of infections is clear can the occupancy of hospital and intensive care beds be realistically predicted, he added.

The German government should therefore follow the advice of its experts and finally systematically collect and evaluate data on the dynamics of infections, the severity of the disease and the burden on the healthcare system. The 19-member Corona Expert Council had called for such data collection, among other things, in its statement released on Wednesday.

Reinhardt added that it is also necessary to have certainty about the effectiveness of the measures taken in the past: “Because the population will only accept new restrictions if they prove to be necessary and effective”, said the president of the medical association. The results of the evaluation of the Corona measures, which should be available at the end of the month, must therefore also be integrated into the subsequent planning.

German Hospital Federation (DKG) President Gerald Gass expressed similar views to Reinhardt and called on politicians to come up with proposals on how the required data collection should be funded and created at no additional cost. for hospitals.

“If politicians now want to use real-time hospital data for the fall, they have to answer the question of how this should be done technically and who will bear the costs of the necessary IT investments,” said the chairman of the board. board of DKG at Editorial Network. Germany. “As we know, the financing of investments is the responsibility of the States, but they have not yet shown any initiative.”

The Expert Council again expects a considerable burden on the healthcare system in the fall and winter. It recommends a legal basis for rapid responses to the potential rise in infection numbers in autumn and winter, and urges long-term improvements – such as data analysis and forecasting.

In addition, the Council calls for uniformity – namely, central coordination of pandemic measures between federal and state governments and the most uniform and timely communication of all existing national regulations and recommendations. .

The Bonn-based virologist Hendrik Streeck hopes for political decisions in line with the proposals of the expert council. Streeck said in the ARD on Wednesday. Whether or not there is a summer corona wave, preparations must be made for the fall anyway, he said. Policymakers have many protective tools, such as vaccination and masks, he said. “We can prepare for anything,” Streeck said.

Asked where he stands on the possibility of another lockdown, he replied: ‘I wouldn’t recommend a lockdown. Nor was it mentioned in the expert council’s statement. Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) had previously pointed out that the advice would become the “basis for the federal government’s Corona autumn plan”.

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