Strengthening child and adolescent rehabilitation is especially important in corona times: www.kinderaerzte-im-netz.de

15/07/2022

After just over two years with the corona pandemic, the need for places in child and adolescent rehabilitation is particularly great. Psychological consequences of the shutdown, huge school problems due to learning gaps in homeschooling, and post-covid symptoms increase the demand for child and adolescent rehabilitation.

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Berlin and Cologne. After just over two years with the corona pandemic, the need for places in child and adolescent rehabilitation is particularly great. Psychological consequences of the shutdown, huge school problems due to learning gaps in homeschooling, and post-covid symptoms increase the demand for child and adolescent rehabilitation. Nevertheless, the financial situation of the approximately 50 rehabilitation clinics specializing in children and adolescents in Germany is dramatic. In order to comply with the hygiene regulations and because families are repeatedly unable to travel at short notice due to corona or infected persons must be discharged, the clinics only have an average occupancy rate of 80 instead of 95 percent. “For more than two years, this has meant a drop in revenue of 15 percent, while costs have been 100 percent. Depending on the clinic, the deficits amount to more than one million euros a year, ”complains Alwin Baumann, spokesman for the Alliance for Children and Adolescent Rehabilitation (BKJR), which looks after the interests of German rehabilitation clinics for children and young people.

Financial support for clinics is declining – despite rising costs

Despite this dramatic economic situation in rehabilitation clinics for children and young people, state subsidies have been abolished since July 2022. “In view of the increasing number of infections, the support regulated by the Social Service Deployment Act (SodEG) in the event of a pandemic-related undercrowding should continued after June 30, 2022, “Baumann demands. The already too low corona supplement of 8 euros per patient per day, so that the clinics can finance the additional costs that the corona entails, is eliminated in the second half of the year. “And this, even though nothing has changed in terms of effort and certainly nothing will change in the autumn / winter. There are also no plans to compensate for inflation, even though the prices of energy and food in particular are on the way. Politicians must therefore come to terms with the question: will we fail children and young people again because of the dreaded hospital insolvencies? ” continued Baumann.

Many children and young people need rehabilitation more than ever

Because the pandemic, where children and young people were long forgotten, has shown that there is a greater need for rehabilitation clinics than ever before. The pandemic has led to reduced social contact, physical inactivity and increased media consumption, stress, violence and abuse. The result is a scientifically proven increase in obesity, ADHD, eating disorders and other mental illnesses such as anxiety disorders, depression, emotional disorders and absenteeism. There are already waiting times at the rehabilitation clinics and the psychiatric and therapeutic facilities. ‘Demand and supply are far apart here. Politicians are encouraged to strengthen rehabilitation and thus ensure that children and young people can later participate fully in professional and social activities and to relieve their families, ”Baumann sums up.

Pediatricians see rehabilitation as an elementary care pathway for later participation

“We pediatricians can only support this concern. We are seeing more and more mentally stressed children and young people in our practice. The corona consequences are clearly noticeable in this group. For the affected young people, rehabilitation often provides a positive change, they learn strategies to better “manage stress and develop resources for difficult times. Both of these are crucial factors for later professional and social participation,” explains Dr. Thomas Fischbach, chairman of the professional association of pediatricians (BVKJ). “It would be fatal if this important supply route were to collapse or be restricted due to the death of a hospital. On the contrary, the goal must be to strengthen the rehabilitation of our children and young people, not to weaken it,” says Dr. Fischbach.

Joint press release from the Alliance for Pediatric and Adolescent Rehabilitation (BKJR) and the Pediatricians’ Professional Association (BVKJ)

Further information on child and adolescent rehabilitation, application forms and a list of child and adolescent rehabilitation clinics with focus points can be found on BKJR’s website: www.kinder-und-jugendreha-im-netz.de

If you have any questions, parents are welcome to use this contact form: https://kinder-und-jugendreha-im-netz.de/kontakt. Alwin Baumann, spokesman for BKJR, will be happy to answer all inquiries and provide support in the application process. If necessary, he advises parents, doctors, psychotherapists, social pediatric centers and other facilities in the child and adolescent sector on telephone 07522/9302661, mobile: 0151/55109994.

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