Nervenarzt 2002 Aug;73(8):785-91
Petereit HF, Ruffing G, Weilbach FX, Zessack N, Zettl UK.
Klinik fur Neurologie, Klinikum der Universitat zu Koln, Josef-Stelzmann-Strasse 9, 50924 Koln.
Introducing the Diagnosis Related Groups (DRG) system into the German public health sector will prompt important changes for in- and outpatient care.
Especially admission to hospital, extent of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, and duration of hospitalisation might be affected.
Taking multiple sclerosis, the most frequent inflammatory disease of the nervous system for Europe, with yearly treatment costs of about 2.3 billion Euro in Germany as example, the effect on reimbursement of complete documentation of the medical output is illustrated.
Extensive information on clinically relevant items is given.
The possible role of the DRG system as a cost- and quality-controlling tool in the German public health system as well as its potential risks in the absence of broadly accepted treatment guidelines is discussed.