The Court of Auditors criticizes the corona policy of the federal and state governments as chaotic and confusing. As can be seen from a rough report available to the APA, there was little coordination between the bodies, especially in the early days of the pandemic. It was not clear to the federal government from which sources the federal states collected their data. There was no overview of the protective equipment available.

The Court of Auditors clearly criticizes the variety of numbers on Covid indicators that the public was supplied with. The Ministry of Health, the Ministry of the Interior and the federal states published on their dashboards or websites daily “in different formats at different times data with different evaluation times and different levels of detail, which sometimes also differed in their definition”, write the inspectors. This affected the public’s trust in the authorities and the accuracy of the data and, as a result, also harmed the acceptance of the pandemic measures.

There was essentially a lack of suitable regulations for crises and disasters, both in hospital law and in general social security law. Health planning also did not contain any precautions. “At the beginning of the pandemic, it was unclear who was responsible for measures to adapt the health system in the event of a pandemic.”

The Court of Auditors also notes that in summer 2020 they failed to equip contact tracing with sufficient staff to be able to break the chains of infection even with high numbers of infections.

The examiners also criticize the lack of surveys on consequential damage due to postponed operations and reduced contacts with doctors. “It was also critical that there was no concept for accompanying research into the long-term consequences of a Covid-19 disease, consequential damage due to restricted services during the Covid-19 pandemic or for a changed needs of the population, for example due to postponed operations. “

The Epidemiological Reporting System (EMS), an electronic register for entering infectious diseases, had been in place since 2009 and was basically also suitable for reporting cases of infection. However, the Ministry of Health has not managed to further develop the functions of the EMS for continuous monitoring of Covid cases, the Court of Auditors found. So it is not possible to record in the EMS how the health status of an infected person including any hospitalization and recovery develops over time, especially since there are no interfaces to the IT systems of the hospitals. “The application of the EMS to the Covid-19 pandemic remains unclear on some points, in particular with regard to the monitoring of the isolation measures and the course of the disease.”

“The federal states implement the nationwide uniform epidemic law through different work processes and IT instruments,” the RH continues. The federal states sometimes interpreted the requirements from the Ministry of Health differently. “That made it difficult to interpret the resulting data.”

The Court of Auditors recommends the further development of the EMS, in particular with regard to the documentation of the course of illnesses and the monitoring of segregation measures and the obligation to register. In addition, the federal states and the federal government should standardize and synchronize their data collection. Furthermore, specifications for the stockpiling of protective equipment and medical devices are to be created.

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