Not only are there more patients due to the Corona summer wave, the staff in hospitals are also affected. Across Germany, many clinics report absenteeism. The tense situation will probably come to a head in autumn at the latest.
The Corona summer wave and the associated absences from illness are causing problems for many clinics in Germany. According to a survey, the situation seems to be a little more relaxed in only a few federal states. However, the overriding tenor is: It could come to a head in autumn.
The corona-related absences from illness and the general shortage of skilled workers in combination with the current holiday season are currently burdening many hospitals and are already having an effect on the patients in some cases. In Bavaria, Baden-Württemberg and some other federal states, less urgent operations have already had to be postponed due to the absence of hospital staff.
"There are more and more failures in clinics, not across the board, but selectively. At certain clinics we really have failures of 20 to 30 percent of the staff," said Eduard Fuchshuber from the Bavarian Hospital Society (BKG). Either the employees themselves are infected or they have to look after children who are at home because of Corona.
The Baden-Württemberg Hospital Society (BWKG) also referred to the shortage of skilled workers and assumes that 10 to 15 percent of the hospital beds cannot currently be occupied, although the corona situation is still relatively stable. The BWKG general manager Matthias Einwag warned that the situation would worsen if there were new waves of corona or flu.
Increasing numbers of corona cases and sick leave from employees are also noticeable in Berlin hospitals. "The workforce has already been greatly reduced due to infections and quarantine," said Marc Schreiner, managing director of the Berlin hospital company.
In the hospitals in Schleswig-Holstein, corona infections are also leading to an aggravation of the staffing situation. According to the managing director of the Schleswig-Holstein hospital company, Patrick Reimund, around 1000 of the around 40,000 employees are missing because of Corona.
There is also a corona-related and general shortage of skilled workers in North Rhine-Westphalia. The situation is aggravated by the strikes at the university hospitals that have been going on for weeks. However, the NRW Ministry of Health assessed the situation as "tense but manageable".
In Hamburg, the situation is not yet worrying, despite the sick leave among employees. "At the current level, we are still able to guarantee care in all medical areas in the Hamburg Asklepios clinics," said a spokesman. However, in a few individual cases, planned examinations and treatments had to be postponed at short notice due to unforeseen staff shortages that could not be compensated for immediately.
In some federal states and their clinics, on the other hand, the situation is more relaxed: In the large hospitals in Brandenburg, for example, there are still no bottlenecks due to staff shortages. There, the sickness rate among staff is comparable to that of the same period last year and has so far been well balanced in the clinic, said a spokeswoman for the Potsdam Clinic Ernst von Bergmann.