Beds... but no nurses

Given that the following information demonstrates serious failure on the part of the German government, it is surprising that it isn’t more widely known.

Back at the start of the pandemic, the Health Ministry realized that it needed to buttress Germany’s intensive care capacity in order to avoid scenes like those in Bergamo, Italy, where hospitals couldn’t cope with a deluge of patients.

So Health Minister Jens Spahn created the COVID-19-Krankenhausentlastungsgesetz (Covid-19 hospital alleviation law), which was intended to increase Germany’s intensive care capacity by offering hospitals financial incentives.

Specifically, the law pledged a one-off €50,000 payment for every extra bed that they could create that could be used for intensive care treatment. To be eligible for the money, hospitals had to either repurpose beds or create new ones equipped with respirators.

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