The RS virus is rampant among small children, and hospitals have to turn away children with shortness of breath due to a lack of staff. The child protection association calls for a financial emergency program.
Duisburg/Berlin – “He got a high fever, gasped for air and just screamed,” says a mother Bild.de. Her eight-week-old son contracted it RS virus and was referred directly to the clinic by a doctor. But in the Oberhauser hospital, the mother was rejected directly because there were no more free beds. The mother stayed and waited until a nurse found a free intensive care bed in a Duisburg clinic. “I was just functioning,” she says.
“I drove to the other hospital alone in the car with my apathetic child. I drove on the freeway with one hand on the steering wheel and the other hand on my baby’s chest,” says the mother. She’s lucky, Oberhausen and Duisburg are only 15 minutes apart. Her son received the saving high-flow therapy there and was in intensive care for six days. “It was pure horror. He was lying on his stomach and was being ventilated. Like the Covid patients back then. ”Due to a wave of respiratory infections, many children’s hospitals are currently overcrowded, as was the case in the past Corona autumn. The German Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine (DIVI) already spoke of a “catastrophic situation” in the children’s intensive care units.
Deutscher Kinderschutzbund – President is “really appalled that it was allowed to come to this”
“I’m really appalled that it was allowed to come to this,” says the President of the German Child Protection Association, Heinz Hilgers Editorial network Germany (RND). “It’s a feeling of complete powerlessness. The lack of child care is very dramatic.” A senior doctor in Hamburg had warned that children die because of RSV because they could not be cared for.
In Hilger’s view, the current crisis is the result of “decades of neglect” by politicians. Due to a lack of skilled workers, it “cannot be managed in the short term”. According to Hilgers, there have been warnings about such an overload in clinics and medical practices for years. Unfortunately, no improvements were made “due to the exclusively business orientation of the system, which is designed for full utilization”.
RSV: Lauterbach wants measures to relocate staff and recommends parents to relieve pediatric practices
In order to counteract the crisis, nursing staff are to be transferred from adult wards to children’s wards. Health Minister Karl Lauterbach (SPD) asked the health insurance companies not to check staffing requirements for the time being and to suspend sanctions. He also appealed to parents and paediatricians to postpone check-ups that are not immediately necessary. On Friday, the Bundestag passed a package of laws on hospitals that is intended to bring more money for children’s clinics and relief for urgently needed nursing staff. There should be an additional 300 million euros each for children’s hospitals in 2023 and 2024.
As tagesschau.de reported, Corona only plays a subordinate role in the current situation in the intensive care units. The proportion of corona patients in the intensive care units is now less than five percent, said the President of the German Interdisciplinary Association for Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine (DIVI), Gernot Marx. “It’s no comparison to the situation a year ago.” Around 2,000 beds have been reduced across Germany, mainly because hospital staff have to work longer due to the constant stress caused by the Pandemic have reduced. (dpa/kat)
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