Lübeck Citizens' Conference on Health Care Modernization (Germany)
- General Issues
- Specific Topics
- Biomedical Research & Development
- Regulatory Policy
- Scope of Influence
- Start Date
- End Date
- Total Number of Participants
- Face-to-Face, Online, or Both
Randomly-selected Lübeck citizens took part in a participatory citizens' conference where they deliberated how to modernize German health care in order to provide policy recommendations for the government.
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Problems and Purpose
The Citizens' Conference in Lubecker ("Lübecker Bürgerkonferenz") was planned by the "Institut für Sozialmedizin der Universität zu Lübeck" under the administration of Professor Heiner Raspe as a means of involving citizens in the process of modernization of the German health care system. Prioritisation identifies a certain order of priority and can happen secret or in public. The Citizens' Conference ensures the prioritization is carried out by the public and is transparent.
Background History and Context
Medical progress causes a big gap between "what is possible" and "what is "affordable". Not every medical achievement can be provided to every patient in the same way and an adequate dimension. Following the example of Sweden, where a mix of ethics and cost-efficiency, called prioritisation, is handled in answering the question, which medical treatment is essential and which is not essential, the German citizens should get involved in this process.
Organizing, Supporting, and Funding Entities
Participant Recruitment and Selection
Methods and Tools Used
This case used citizen conferences, which allow randomly-selected citizens to deliberate on policy in order to provide collectively agreed-upon recommendations to government. Then, the "government entity can then use these recommendations to better meet the needs of its citizens." 
What Went On: Process, Interaction, and Participation
23 random citizens of Lübeck met on three scheduling dates to engage in the theme of health care in Germany. Afterwards they got the chance to meet several experts. Together they worked out the details of the "Bürgervotum", containing the guidelines for prioritisation.
Influence, Outcomes and Effects
Analysis and Lessons Learned
The original version of this case study first appeared on Vitalizing Democracy in 2010 and was a contestant for the 2011 Reinhard Mohn Prize. It was originally submitted by Andreas Hoffelder.
Lead Image: Lubeck Citizen Conference http://tinyurl.com/y2b5yu4s