Billions in costs for health insurance companies?

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Billions in costs for health insurance companies? The chair of the Barmer GEK, Birgit Fischer, and representatives of an evidence-based medicine warn against possible black-and-yellow government health policies that could cost billions

Media reports on measures at IQWiG According to a report by the ARD magazine "Monitor" dated January 7, 2010 with the title "Victory of the pharmaceutical lobby for the pill TÜV?", The "Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG) “Be restricted in his work for more transparency and independent drug control.

The IQWiG was launched in 2004 by the red-green federal government to have medical services and especially medicines tested for their effectiveness by an independent institution. According to "Monitor", the IQWiG has been fiercely fought by "pharmaceutical industry and device manufacturers" since it was founded, "because in many cases it has proven that expensive medicines have no relevant additional benefit for patients, but cause high costs for health insurance companies . "

According to Monitor and an article by Spiegel-Online "Doctors stand up for critical drug examiners", the critical institute is now being attacked by the black and yellow federal government. There is then a paper entitled “Core demands on a black and yellow health policy” in which leading health politicians from the CDU parliamentary group advocate a restructuring of the IQWiG.

Head of the institute receives support The head of the institution, Peter Sawicki, is a well-known representative of strictly scientific medicine, also beyond our national borders. According to further media reports, it is to be replaced due to miscalculations that are considered to be minor. However, resistance is now being raised in the form of a petition from around 600 doctors, who point out that Sawicki was the one who gave the IQWiG recognition and reputation on the international stage. The petition, which was sent to Minister of Health Philipp Rösler and the IQWiG Board of Trustees, also pointed out that the entire medical sciences in Germany and the international networking of the institute would be damaged.

Additional costs for our health care system? The question that many journalists believe here is not just whether the profitability of German pharmaceutical companies is more important than the independent assessment of medical services. Gerd Antes, founding and board member of the German Evidence-Based Medicine Network, spokesman for the initiative group for the establishment of a national registry for clinical studies and head of the Cochrane Institute at the Freiburg University Hospital, also speaks on Spiegel- Online of a "considerable loss of quality in care" and, above all, that it "could possibly cost the health insurance companies billions".

The new chairwoman Birgit Fischer of the newly merged Barmer GEK (with approx. 8.5 million insured persons is now the "market leader" among the statutory health insurers) also warns of this not insignificant cost problem. Right at the beginning of her term, she pointed out the additional costs that the introduction of the non-income-related head allowance would, according to the will of the black and yellow federal government, cause. According to her statements, Germany would have to raise at least 20 billion euros more from taxpayers' money if there was to be a social balance between higher and low earners.

It remains to be seen whether the decisions regarding the IQWiG and the lump sum per head will be thoroughly checked again by the decision-makers for this loss of quality and possible additional costs and then corrected if in doubt.
(Thorsten Fischer, naturopath osteopathy, 10.1. 2010)

Other topics:
IQWiG: Is Peter Sawicki too critical?

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Video: Where is the Waste in Health Spending?


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