German patients escape financial penalties for not following their doctor’s advice

BMJ 2008; 336 doi: (Published 10 January 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;336:65
  1. Annette Tufts
  1. 1Heidelberg

    Patients with chronic disease in Germany will now be penalised only if they explicitly declare that they have not taken drugs and followed their doctor’s advice and will continue doing this in the future.

    The government originally wanted to impose financial penalties on any patient who did not follow medical advice. But the plan was abandoned after doctors and patient groups mounted vigorous protests, saying that it would destroy the doctor-patient relationship. The legality and ethics of the plan were also questioned.

    The compromise was reached just before Christmas by …

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