A little more than a year ago, general practitioner ulrich voit opened a branch practice in wallenfels. To this day, he has not regretted this step: "I was well received and look forward every day when things get going. The people of wallenfels are fun-loving; it's very familiar here."
A branch office is certainly nothing out of the ordinary these days. How this came about, however, is far from obvious. "We have 116.000 euro invested to create space for a practice in the cultural center", emphasizes mayor peter hanel, who has even brought investors on board for the financing. "We wanted to use the rooms to give a doctor an incentive not to go into debt. In this way the costs are manageable."
The mayor can live well with the branch office solution by ulrich voit, who does not run the practice full-time, as well as with the local conditions. Originally, the city wanted to renovate a building that once housed the schmidt bank: "we almost got it wrong. The costs had simply been too high", clarifies the mayor.
And indeed, the city's commitment enables ulrich voit to run the practice economically, as the figures from the first quarter of this year prove. According to voit, the practice has turned over 15,000 euros in this period. "That is 5000 euro per month. This is offset by costs of 3750 euros", the physician emphasizes and refers to expenses for personnel, rent and insurance, among other things. "For the medical services there are 1250 euros left before taxes", voit explains the necessity of a positive result. "The figures show that a practice is possible as a sideline and that there is a need in wallenfels." The feedback from the population is positive in any case: "i think the population is happy that we are there"." In terms of volume, the operation can currently be maintained well. "But there is a tendency for it to become more", emphasizes the physician, who currently bills around 300 patients in a quarter.
He talks about a magic limit for actually being able to work economically. However, the pain threshold is already reached with 400 patients in order to be able to operate a branch practice on this scale, explains voit. "Then I had to look for a partner,", clarifies voit, who has a concrete thought in this regard. "But that's the future."
Years ago, the 59-year-old already addressed the emerging shortage of doctors in rural areas. He has been an advisor to the city of wallenfels itself in the discussion about medical care. When the mayor called in november 2010 to tell him that one of the two physicians practicing in the floberstadt had closed his practice, voit did not have to be asked for long. "If i'm going to give advice, i can't just say no", he emphasizes his reasons for moving. He considers the branch office practice in general to have no future at all. "You only have to take a look around in the trade press. This is becoming more and more common."
That's one of the reasons why ulrich voit has no trouble getting into his car every day to drive from schwarzenbach am wald to wallenfels. On wednesdays and fridays he even does this twice, because in between he looks after patients in schwarzenbach. Nevertheless, he is happy to accept this loss: "I feel very much at home in wallenfels. This is really spab."