The Corona bonus for nurses of up to 1500 euros is to be paid according to plans of the Federal Government via a cost-sharing. Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) and Employment Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) propose that the care funds cover two-thirds of the costs and the Länder and employers take the last third. This is clear from a letter from Spahn and Heil to representatives of employees and employers of care for the elderly, which is available to SPIEGEL. The plans are expected to be part of a Corona package for health care to come to cabinet this Wednesday.
On the care bonus, Spahn said: “Without dedicated nurses, our health system wouldn’t work.” This was shown once again during the Corona pandemic. The work in nursing homes and outpatient care is particularly challenging. “This deserves special financial recognition in the form of a premium.” Heil said: “Care workers are currently doing incredible work to the most vulnerable in our society.” It is important that all employees in the institutions are entitled to a premium and that the proportion of those to be cared for does not increase.
Experts had put forward a proposal for a Corona bonus, which was also supported by the Verdi union and nursing employers. It provides for a staggered premium that benefits nurses, but also trainees and other employees in institutions.
Contribution rates to remain stable despite care bonus
As Heil and Spahn announce in the letter, it should also be made clear by law that the financing of premiums must not increase the own share of those in need of care. In order to stabilise the contribution rates, the Ministry of Health and Finance intend to decide in the second half of the year on higher tax subsidies for statutory health and long-term care insurance. This will include the question of the counter-financing of this one-off premium, the letter states.
The German Patient Protection Foundation welcomed the fact that the government did not want to burden patients. “What is bad is that the ministers Spahn and Heil do not commit themselves to paying the federal share in full from tax revenue,” said Board member Eugen Brysch. The promises of the policy should not burden the contributors or plunder the care fund for the young generation.
FDP expert politician Nicole Westig said that Spahn is finally putting forward a funding proposal. But she warned that care funds and care facilities would have to save money elsewhere. Moreover, the enormous performance in nursing remains unappreciated. “The nurses in the clinics have prepared everything under high pressure for the treatment of a large number of severe corona cases.”