In an interview with WELT AM SONNTAG, Kai Hankeln, CEO of the private clinic chain Asklepios, sharply criticizes the hospital reform planned by Federal Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) and calls for far-reaching reforms for hospitals. “I don't see that real structural reform is possible with the current government. Everything we've heard about this reform so far is nonsense that won't help the hospitals," Hankeln told the newspaper in relation to Lauterbach's planned hospital reform.
According to Hankeln, it is "inevitable that some hospitals will be closed or converted into outpatient clinics". According to Hankeln, health care in rural areas can be ensured by converting some clinics in rural areas to outpatient hospitals. “The key is to downsize the inpatient area and ramp up the outpatient area. However, this requires specially equipped outpatient clinics that are linked to inpatient hospitals," Hankeln told WELT AM SONNTAG.
Hankeln criticizes the way the federal government communicates about Corona. "I would also like to say that I am increasingly annoyed by the warnings from politicians about the impending emergency caused by Corona," said Hankeln. At Asklepios, there has been “no nationwide emergency” due to Corona since the beginning of the pandemic. "We only had that regionally in individual hospitals where we had to transfer intensive care patients, for example," says Hankeln. At the moment, Hankeln does not see any overloading of the Asklepios clinics due to Corona. “Of the patients who now have Covid and are in the hospital, very few require intensive care or ventilation. So we still have enough reserves,” says Hankeln.