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German doctors plead for DRG (Diagnosis Related Groups) delay:

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

Germany's doctors last week demanded that the convergence phase of the diagnosis related groups (DRG) system for hospital reimbursement be delayed by five years. This would allow more time for doctors to adjust to the new system and establish a consensus for its final implementation. Following the introduction of the system on a voluntary basis at the start of 2003, certain DRGs were in need of improvement, delegates to the 106th German doctors' conference in Cologne heard. In addition, certain complex medical specialisms, such as dermatology and accident and emergency surgery were not properly reflected in DRGs, they were told. Furthermore, delegates agreed that DRGs should be structured so as to take into account costs incurred for the further education of doctors, to ensure quality care in the future.

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