The corona summer wave hits the clinics with force. Although intensive care bed occupancy is still increasing moderately, it is at a high level for the time of year. On the other hand, the personnel situation is dramatic. So many employees have contracted Covid that departments are being closed across the country.
The increasing loss of clinic staff due to the corona summer wave is causing concern among hospitals and doctors. "We have received reports from all federal states that individual wards and departments also have to be deregistered due to a lack of staff," said the CEO of the German Hospital Society (DKG), Gerald Gaß, the editorial network Germany (RND). At times, emergency admissions would also be canceled at the rescue control centers. "This situation worries us a lot with a view to the upcoming autumn," said Gass.
The number of infections has risen sharply in recent weeks. The Robert Koch Institute gives the official number of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days at around 687. Experts estimate the actual number to be about twice as high because many infected people no longer do a PCR test and are therefore not recorded.
The scientific head of the intensive care bed register, Christian Karagiannidis, told the "Rheinische Post": "The intensive care occupancy is only increasing moderately, but the occupancy for a summer is relatively high, and the available beds are becoming fewer and fewer due to the lack of staff." Therefore, the time should now be used to optimally distribute capacities. "This includes regional networks for the best possible distribution of patients according to the level of care. Cooperation, but also relieving the burden on staff, will be the order of the day this autumn and winter," said Karagiannidis, who also sits on the Federal Government's Expert Council.
The German Foundation for Patient Protection rejected a demand for the quarantine period to be shortened. The FDP Vice-Chairman Wolfgang Kubicki had suggested a free test by means of a quick test after just three days. So far there are five, a free test is only recommended, it is only mandatory for hospital and nursing staff. This "is fueling the uncontrolled spread of Corona," criticized foundation board member Eugen Brysch in the newspapers of the Funke media group. "Therefore, the isolation time for corona positives must be extended to ten days. This may only be shortened if a PCR test is negative."
The head of the GEW education union, Maike Finnern, called for a legal basis for mask and test requirements in order to avoid school closures in autumn. "This includes the possibility of a mask requirement if the number of infections continues to rise sharply. But this also includes the possibility of reintroducing regular tests in educational institutions in the event of high 7-day incidences," she told RND. Everything must be done to prevent schools and daycare centers from closing again.
The chairman of the Education and Training Association (VBE), Udo Beckmann, expects individual learning groups or schools to be closed again if the infection rate is high, as he told the RND. "Against this background, it must be ensured that all schools are digitally equipped in such a way that students can be reached digitally even if distance learning is necessary. Even after two years of the pandemic, there are still schools that do not have a broadband connection or WLAN."