Against the fear of you is not with Numbers. The St. Gallen government was threatening toured the Eastern part of Switzerland, had tried to explain why the hospital closures were necessary (“A deficit of 70 million Swiss francs, the number of patients in smaller hospitals are too deep”). Unsuccessful. The senior civil servants got the whole fear in the face, thrown.

Since Wednesday is clear: The St. Gallen government through its Plan and wants to close about half of its hospitals, and these so-called emergency centers to replace. Are affected Altstätten, Flawil, Rorschach, Walenstadt and Wattwil. 60 to 70 Points to be deleted.

Unpopular measure

The goal: save money and the deficit in the hospital landscape in limits. A Problem that many politicians are familiar with outside of Eastern Switzerland: The health care costs explode. But who wants to close hospitals, should better adapt to his removal from office.

Whether or not closures, but really the cost, it is also in the St. Gallen government disagree. Hospital closures are not a panacea, said SP Minister of health, Heidi Hanselmann (58) in the magazine “strings” a few days ago and against the government.

If you discuss locations, would be simply shifted costs. “The have shown experience in the cantons of Berne or Zurich, where small hospitals have been closed. The cost increase is more gone,” says Hanselmann, who is also President of the cantonal health Directors ‘ conference. Also, the health insurance premiums would not decrease if there were fewer hospitals.

Meet the two hospitals?

five Other closed hospitals are not enough: health economist Heinz Locher (75) wants to go further. “Two hospitals are to meet in the Canton of St. Gallen.” The Rest you can cover with emergency centers.

For Locher is clear: Includes a hospital, saves the Canton. “Hospitals have high fixed costs, regardless of whether or not a Patient is there or not.” For patients, a concentration on a few locations benefits have. “The Doctors in large hospitals, more Routine, and the Material is better.”

But also the provincial spirit plays in the hospital planning: In Frauenfeld, Winterthur, ZH, or Herisau hospitals are also. In the planning of the Canton of St. Gallen are to be disregarded.

“held hostage by local politicians”

The fight against hospital closures mobilized in cities and villages. No one wants to do without the safety, to be rapidly treated. “Hospital planning is held hostage by local politicians,” says Locher.

He should know: Together with Anton Grüninger (72), Hansel’s predecessor in the St. Gallen cantonal government, he wanted to close before the age of 16 some hospitals. In the same year, green has been voted out of office Inger and Heidi Hanselmann began with a promise: “With me, no hospitals will be closed.” On Tuesday, a week ago, hanselmann submitted her resignation.