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Health financing: Panel doctors demand reimbursement ban for homeopathy

2019-09-06T07:50:31.579Z

The head of the Kassenärztliche Vereinigung deplores a misuse of the solidarity system. The Minister of Health should take homeopathy from the catalog of benefits.



Chief physician Andreas Gassen calls on health minister Jens Spahn (CDU) to end the cash financing of homeopathic remedies. "We need a statutory reimbursement ban for homeopathy," said Gassen the New Osnabrücker Zeitung . Spahn and the health politicians in parliament would have to show their colors in this matter.

"On the one hand, there are extremely tough standards for granting therapies for life-threatening people, he explained his position. " On the other hand, money is thrown out. For me as a doctor that is unbearable "If patients believed in the effects of homeopathy, then they have to pay it themselves," said the chief physician. "The solidarity-funded health insurance must not be abused for." Gassen doubts the effect of Homeopathy for some time in public statements.

In France, the health insurance companies will reduce their costs from next year, and in Great Britain the discussion took place several years ago. In Germany is already discussed for a long time, even among coalition politicians.

Homeopathy, which works with billionths of dilutions of supposedly effective substances, did not succeed in proving any use according to scientific standards, said Gassen. Homeopathic remedies therefore do not stand in the statutory catalog of benefits. The problem is in his view with lawmakers and health insurance equally: "As long as the legislature makes a slim foot and allows the health insurance to refund homeopathy through the back door, they will do that, otherwise they lose their customers," said Gassen.

According to the KBV, the reimbursement of homeopathy costs the general public of contributors around 70 million euros annually. The expenditures of the public health insurance companies amounted in the year 2018 altogether 3,300 times more: 234 billion euro, the tendency has been rising for years.

The funds cover the costs under certain conditions. This includes a doctor's prescription. They draw limits, for example, in life-threatening illnesses. With regard to the benefit, it is said about the AOK: "A purely scientific explanation of how homeopathy works is not yet available." Which does not mean that no benefit could be detected in the patient. Health insurance companies justify their homeopathic offer by offering their insured a free choice on how to treat illnesses.

Source: zeit

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