Pharmacists protest by fax

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Protest fax campaign by pharmacists against "special victims"

With a fax campaign, the pharmacists are protesting against the compulsory discount for the statutory health insurance (SHI) on medication given. This "special sacrifice" was no longer acceptable given the good financial situation of the health insurance companies. "The money from the health insurance funds is not intended for the savings stocking, but for the health care of the insured," emphasized the President of the Baden-Württemberg State Pharmacist Association (LAV), Fritz Becker, in a recent press release.

On Wednesday, the next round of negotiations between pharmacists and health insurers is pending on the amount of the discount that must be paid when dispensing medication. The LAV Baden-Württemberg reports that the compulsory discount had "been raised by politicians from EUR 1.75 to EUR 2.05 for the past two years as a special victim" in order to relieve the statutory health insurance. However, this special sacrifice is no longer necessary due to the billions of surpluses in the health fund and health insurance companies. Two days before the next round of negotiations in Berlin, LAV President Fritz Becker emphasized: "It cannot be the case that the statutory health insurance companies, despite their billions of financial reserves, want to continue to burden the pharmacies financially unchanged in 2013 against the will of the legislature." Politicians and pharmacists are themselves agree that the starting point for the negotiation should be a discount of 1.75 euros, while the health insurers consider the 2.05 euros as the basis.

Annual negotiations between health insurance companies and pharmacists Every year, the discount on dispensed medication has to be renegotiated between pharmacies and the statutory health insurance companies. On this basis, the increase to EUR 2.05 per drug in the past two years was limited in time and must now be reduced, according to the state pharmacist association. According to the pharmacists, the starting point of the negotiations should therefore be the original 1.75 euros. The legislator also takes this position, but the health insurers refuse to reduce the negotiation base accordingly and question the limited special sacrifice of pharmacies, according to the LAV Baden-Württemberg. Pharmacists in several federal states have therefore asked the cash registers in numerous federal states to "reduce the burden on pharmacists to an appropriate and fair level", reports the State Pharmacists Association. The protest action is to continue until Wednesday. In addition, all further "contract negotiations with the health insurance companies (for example via blood glucose test strips) would be suspended until further notice."

Pharmacists criticize health insurance companies 'refusal to take action According to the Baden-Württemberg State Pharmacists' Association, the pharmacists of Baden-Württemberg, Saarland, Thuringia and Mecklenburg-West Pomerania took part in the fax campaign. “The pharmacies have made their savings contribution in the past two years and are additionally generating over a billion euros in savings for the health system each year through the implementation of the discount contracts,” said Fritz Becker. The negotiating partners did not recognize this service on the part of the health insurance companies. In his view, the health insurance companies "show with their current refusal to accept that they are not willing to pay a reasonable price for the care of their insured." But care at the sling price cannot be the claim of our health care system. "Anyone who demands high quality for patients must also pay for the services accordingly," said the LAV President.

Health insurance companies should return to a constructive dialogue The President of the Baden-Württemberg State Pharmacists Association was outraged by the refusal of the health insurance companies to accept a mandatory 1.75 euro discount as the basis for negotiations for next Wednesday. Apparently, the statutory health insurance companies no longer want to know about the time limit of the increased mandatory discount and "this despite the fact that many pharmacies suffer from the austerity measures and have to close six pharmacies in Germany every week," reports Becker. Here a return to fair negotiation between the partners of the self-government is necessary and the establishment of a fair pharmacy discount is essential. "Next Wednesday, the statutory health insurance companies have one last chance to conduct a constructive dialogue in the self-administration of the healthcare system and thus take care of the insured seriously and pay fairly for the expected benefits," concluded the LAV President. (fp)

Also read:
Warning strike of pharmacists in Baden-Württemberg
Pharmacists are increasing the pressure on cash registers
Health insurance patients pay an additional € 380
Warning strikes by pharmacists are having an effect
Doctor protest in the dispute over income

Image: Siepmann H /

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