Higher administrative court demands postponing operations

The Berlin-Brandenburg Higher Administrative Court decided in two urgent proceedings that the restriction on the treatment of patients imposed on emergency hospitals and emergency centers by the Second Hospital Covid-19 Ordinance is lawful.

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Thereafter, subject to compliance with certain quotas, they are only allowed to carry out medically urgent, plannable admissions, operations and interventions. Opposing decisions by the Berlin Administrative Court were overturned.

The Higher Administrative Court did not follow the opinion of the Administrative Court that the challenged provision was already null and void due to the lack of a basis for authorization. Rather, there are predominant arguments in favor of the fact that the reservation and freeing quotas in emergency hospitals and emergency centers have been lawfully ordered as necessary protective measures on the basis of the federal law's authorization in the Infection Protection Act. The term “protective measures” used there is comprehensive and enables the infection control authorities to take the broadest possible spectrum of measures. Although the capacity restrictions are primarily aimed at coping with an emergency in inpatient care expected in connection with the corona pandemic, this also helps to prevent the spread of corona infections. Namely, by ensuring that people suffering from Covid-19 can be isolated and treated as effectively as possible in the medical facilities provided for this purpose. In view of the financial compensation granted to them, the applicants, two emergency hospital providers, had not sufficiently proven that they were threatened with significant losses in income or possible liquidity bottlenecks. Since the reservation and vacancy rates apply to all emergency hospitals equally, it is not understandable that this threatens the applicants' reputation (resolutions of April 30, 2021 - OVG 1 S 66/21 and 67/21).





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