This patient needs urgent help. Even acute care in hospitals can no longer be guaranteed, insiders are sounding the alarm. Politics must now finally get going!
Frustrated faces in the ambulances, hardly any free space, hours of waiting for medical measures, endless waiting lists for nursing homes or departments that close immediately. There is no shortage of patients, but there is a shortage of staff. “We warned during the Corona pandemic that people were running away from us. It was not taken seriously. And now even acute care in hospitals is no longer guaranteed,” reports Elisabeth Potzmann, president of the Austrian Health and Nursing Association.
In a hospital, two patients recently died in the emergency room because they had to wait so long for care. Is this the norm in Austrian hospitals? Even before the pandemic, institutions were “planning on edge”, and the pandemic subsequently caused many nursing staff to change jobs. “You have to approach them, we have to get them back,” says Potzmann. She is convinced that many would like to work in nursing – but only if the terms and conditions are right.
Wages need to be adjusted and increased
It mainly needs grid protection. “In their spare time, employees should always be expected to help. That does not work in the long run,” the expert explains. Secondly, wages must increase: “The further away the care is from the doctor, the less the employees are paid. That is incomprehensible.” Intensive care is at the top of the scale, home care is at the bottom.
Health Minister Johannes Rauch (Greens) is also aware that the system is suffering. He hopes that the hospitals will be relieved by expanding the practice area. The hospitals themselves are a matter for the federal states.
This is also part of the clinical picture: health care is divided among a wide variety of responsible agencies: federal, state and health insurance funds. Responsibilities can easily be pushed back and forth, especially pushed away. For Potzmann it is clear: “The system must be reorganized, otherwise a reform is hardly possible.” Until then, it’s best not to get sick – you won’t get old either.
I am Wallace Jones, an experienced journalist. I specialize in writing for the world section of Today Times Live. With over a decade of experience, I have developed an eye for detail when it comes to reporting on local and global stories. My passion lies in uncovering the truth through my investigative skills and creating thought-provoking content that resonates with readers worldwide.