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Rehabilitation (Stuttg). 2013 Oct;52(5):322-8. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1330005. Epub 2013 Jun 7.

[Recommendations for overcoming interface problems in medical rehabilitation of federal pension funds and statutory health insurance].

[Article in German]

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Institut für Sozialmedizin, Universität zu Lübeck.



Interface problems in medical rehabilitation are a consequence of problems with communication and cooperation, lack of information and transparency. Different stakeholders are trying to solve these problems since many years or decades respectively. Following a series of deficit-oriented studies we tried to develop recommendations for possible solutions of important interface problems together with affected people based on a qualitative analysis of main problem areas.


10 separate group discussions with rehabilitation patients, general practitioners and specialists in private practices, representatives of the federal pension fund and statutory health insurance as well as clinicians from rehabilitation clinics and 3 mixed group discussions (all before mentioned groups excluding rehabilitation patients) were conducted. These group discussions served to prepare a semidiurnal final conference. All meetings were recorded and content analyzed or summarized in protocols respectively.


Results are recommendations on strategies to reduce interface problems in medical rehabilitation. Those are: development of a rehabilitation-information-website for insurees and general practitioners and specialists in private practices; changes in forms, applications, notifications; advanced training for general practitioners and specialists in private practices und support in detecting rehabilitation need.


Due to divided structures of care provision and increasing specialization, overcoming interface problems is one of the main challenges in the provision of medical rehabilitation. It can be met if different stakeholder approach each other without prejudices, share instead of demarcate competencies and are willing to strike new paths. Our recommendations represent the first step to reaching this goal.

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