Why do elderly persons, in need of long-term care, migrate from Germany to a nursing home in an Eastern European country? Essay


“Pflegenotstand: Wenn deutsche Omas in die Slowakei fliehen mussen“ ( Dowideit 2012 ) [ 1 ] , “Weil Deutsche Heime zu teuer Sind: Opa wohnt jetzt in Ungarn” ( Kettlinger 2014 ) [ 2 ] , such and similar headlines have appeared in newspapers in Germany in recent months and old ages. Even the British day-to-day newspaperThe Guardian( Connolly 2012 ) has shown involvement in developments in the German attention sector when printing articles with rubrics such as “Germany ‘exporting ‘ old and ill to foreign attention homes” .

These articles portray instances where Germans have migrated to Eastern European states [ 3 ] to have long-run attention ( LTC ) at nursing places for the aged. Those motions are depicted as being enforced to some extent because of high costs and low quality of services at nursing places in Germany. The intelligence studies have triggered extremely emotional remarks and treatments in the newspaper message boards, runing between the extremes of ‘inhumane intervention of the elderly’ and ‘it ‘s Oklahoma, people with dementedness don’t attention where they live’ . It seems that the media play an of import function informing the wide populace about this specific market offer – having LTC at a nursing place outside of Germany. I should besides advert that I got to cognize this migration phenomenon through one of the several telecasting docudramas, which have been broadcasted on this subject.

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Furthermore, the newspaper articles have besides called attending and related the moves of the aged individuals to grudges in the German attention sector. Issues, such as hapless working and living conditions in residential places for the aged, deficit of skilled workers in the attention sector, or high fiscal loads on attention dependent elderly and their households, created by assorted LTC agreements are invariably reported and criticized in the media. This demonstrates that attention of aged is an acute concern within the German society that has besides reached the degrees of political relations. The Federal Ministry of Health depicts LTC and betterments in the attention sector as its nucleus undertakings during the present legislative period ( Bundesministerium fur Gesundheit 2014a, online ) .

The Ministry intends to implement legal amendments and policies that are directed to and might impact the more than 2.6 million individuals who are assessed as being LTC dependant in the Federal Republic of Germany in 2013 ( Bundesministerium fur Gesundheit 2014a, online ) . Due to demographic alterations it is expected that these Numberss will increase in Germany in the hereafter and that the proportion of population demanding LTC is turning, as it is the instance in many other ( European ) states.

The impact of demographic aging in Germany and within the European Union ( EU ) is expected to be of major significance in the coming decennaries. “Consistently low birth rates and higher life anticipation will transform the form of the EU-27’s age pyramid ; likely the most of import alteration will be the pronounced passage towards a much older population construction and this development is already going apparent in several EU Member States” ( Eurostat, online ) . Population aging finds its look in the Numberss of really old people particularly. In 2008, about four million 80 twelvemonth old individuals ( and older ) were populating in Germany. This corresponds to five per centum of the entire population. This figure is expected to turn continuously to over 10 million in the twelvemonth 2050. ( Statistisches Bundesamt 2009: 5, online )

Depending on the person, aging does non automatically connote that each individual will go frail, nevertheless, the hazard of going dependant on LTC rises when a individual progresss in age. Nevertheless, going old and frail confronts those affected with a series of challenges and inquiries. There is non merely the demand to set to physical and sometimes mental alterations, but besides the force per unit area to happen and finance attention to back up day-to-day activities. These issues might present major jobs to the person ; nevertheless they besides impose challenges on the degree of society and policy shapers, particularly when the figure of old and frail members of a population increases. It contests non merely cultural and social norms on who is responsible for taking attention of the aged, but besides societal security systems to cover turning fiscal demands of a turning group of people claiming protection.

However, as Haberkern ( 2009: 13 ) illustrates, the sudden happening of attention dependence of parents, can do major jobs to their kids. They are confronted with the frail wellness and nearing decease and loss of their parents and sometimes experience duty-bound to help them in this hard clip. At the same clip, they know how demanding attention can be and that this state of affairs might stretch out for old ages. Consequently, a cardinal alteration of life style might be inevitable, sometimes even giving up paid employment. Besides the psychological and emotional strain, the attention dependence of aged relations is likely to impact the whole household and besides exceed the fiscal resources of a household.

There are diverse theoretical accounts of how to cover people ‘s demand of attention, runing from domestic attention given by relations, sometimes supported by out-patient attention services, sometimes by live-in migratory workers, to residential attention in a place for the aged. However, people in demand of attention and their relations seek new ways to have appropriate and low-cost nursing. Some hunt for attention beyond the boundary lines of the German state province. For them, migrating is one alternate solution. They move to nursing places in Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia or Hungary. Several places are particularly designed to suit German aged individuals in demand of attention. A scope of bureaus have started to offer services to assist the people in demand to happen an equal residential place abroad. The placing bureaus and nursing places advertise themselves as offering a higher criterion of attention while costs are 30-50 per centum lower compared to German nursing places ( Seniorpalace.eu n.d. , online ; ViaNeo Ventures 2014, online ) .

These advertizements seem to react to the findings of the Eurobarometer 67.3 that has surveyed citizens of EU 27 states and their penchants toward assorted types of attention, measuring entree, quality and affordability of attention. Dittmann ( 2008: 4 ) notes, that, harmonizing to the study, approximately 75 per centum of the Germans consider inpatient attention at nursing places as non low-cost. Sing the quality of attention at nursing places, 35 per centum of East Germans and 42 per centum of West Germans evaluate it as being “not really high” or “not high at all” . Harmonizing to Dittmann ( ibid. ) , these consequences for Germany exceeded other Western European states. He suggests that the negative perceptual experience might correlate with existent lacks in the inmate attention in Germany.

The above described issues and developments exemplify that attention of aged is a prevailing and relevant concern in Germany that contests premises about old age, LTC and policies in the attention sector in general. Central is the inquiry: Who is responsible for the attention of the aged – the household, the market or the province? Besides demographic alterations, lifting female employment rates or transmutations in family composings, neo-liberal restructuring procedures are seen at the nucleus of causes of the so called ‘care crisis’ in Germany.

Therefore, this research undertaking is relevant in several respects. First of wholly, despite the huge organic structure of literature on migration and multinational procedures, the phenomenon of LTC dependent individuals migrating to foreign states has non yet been examined scientifically. The bulk of multinational migration surveies focuses on the mobility of workers that is associated with production, whereas bing research and literature on Lifestyle Migration and International Retirement Migration ( IRM ) focuses on migration of comparatively flush persons, partially after work life, that is seen as being ingestion oriented ( King et al. 1998 ; Gustafson 2008 ; Benson & A ; O’Reilly 2009 ) . These attacks nevertheless, assume to some extent, “that when the migrators are widowed or become frail, many return to their former parts of residence” ( King et al. 1998: 93 ) . While the migration of LTC dependent individuals can be viewed as ingestion oriented every bit good, these individuals migrate merely when and because they are frail. Therefore this research undertaking aims to widen the organic structure of research on migration by ethnographically analysing a specific group of people, who are frequently considered as being immobile.

Second, while there is an bing organic structure of research that relates migration to policies in the attention sector in Germany and Austria ( Hitzemann et al. 2012 ; Gendera 2007 ) , those surveies examine the migration of the attention giving individuals. This research undertaking nevertheless, purposes to analyze the relation between public policies in the attention sector in Germany and the migratory motions of the attention receiving systems. Thus it is the effort to look into the wider systemic forces that shape those motions of the aged individuals

Within the frame of this maestro ‘s thesis research undertaking I aim to research the factors which led to the migration of aged individuals in demand of attention to a nursing place in an Eastern European state. Furthermore, I examine in which ways and to what extent these motions can be assessed by constructs of transnationalism, in peculiar the construct of “transnational societal spaces” . Through this geographic expedition I aim to follow the issue from the degree of the person to wider social and structural transmutations and reconstituting procedures in Germany, every bit good as in the receiving state of the aged. Harmonizing to Arango ( 2000: 293 ) the relevancy of the political dimension in determining migratory flows and types can barely be overstated, it can be viewed as policy making migration. This type of migration is the look of assorted factors in economic, societal and cultural footings, which involves involvements of assorted histrions and legal models. Therefore it calls for a multinational position on the migration processes of the aged individuals in demand of LTC.

The chief research inquiry with its sub-questions can hence be formulated in the undermentioned manner:

Why do aged individuals, in demand of long-run attention, migrate from Germany to a nursing place in an Eastern European state?

( 1 ) To what extent and in what ways is this migration connected to kineticss within the German public assistance province and society, such as neo-liberal transmutations?

( 2 ) To what extent and in what ways do multinational societal infinites emerge through these migration processes?

Peoples in demand of attention besides migrate to other states outside the European Union. However, this research undertaking focuses on aged migrating from Germany to other European states in order to have nursing. The specific legal model within the EU, which shapes this signifier of mobility is of involvement in this undertaking.

In the followers, constructs of old age grade the get downing point of the theoretical model of the research undertaking that is depicted inChapter 2. Further on, Theories of migration and multinational societal infinites are followed by a treatment of anthropological positions on public policies and considerations on public assistance and the province. Particular attending is paid to neo-liberal transmutations within public assistance provinces. InChapter 3the survey design and the methods that have been applied in this research undertaking are presented.Chapter 4provides information about German LTC Insurance strategy that depicts the point of entry of the policy analysis inChapter 5.Particular attending is paid toward the political and societal context of the LTC policy and the assorted histrions and transmutations in this sector.Chapter 6starts with general considerations on institutional attention agreements. Further on, penetrations to peculiar instances of the migration processes of LTC dependent individuals, the institutional context they are embedded every bit good as puting bureau as facilitator of the resettlements are offered. It continues with a elaborate treatment and analysis of the empirical findings. Reasoning comments and a sum-up of the research undertaking are presented inChapter 7.

2.Theoretical positions

This chapter provides the theoretical model of the research undertaking. Theories, constructs, and definitions, albeit they of course simplify world, serve to grok the complexness of societal phenomena. They function as lenses through which factors and forces that shape societal procedures can be identified and analyzed. Consequently, the pick of model or lens influences the decision drawn through analysis straight. ( Parsons 1995: 57f ) Or in the words of Pries ( 2001a: 6 ) : “What we see depends on the lens through which we view it.”

Since the individuals under survey in this research undertaking are aged who are dependent on LTC, this chapter provides an lineation of construct of ‘old age’ as a cultural and societal concept every bit good as a definition of attention and LTC dependence. It so continues with an explication of dominant migration theories with a specific focal point on multinational positions in this field of survey. Transnational societal infinites are highlighted as facets of socialisation beyond the boundary lines of state provinces. The proposed dimensions of multinational societal infinites ( Pries 2008 ) are described as tools for systematic consideration, function and comparing of multinational facets of the migration motion. Further on, the anthropological conceptualisation of public policy is presented and different attacks toward the province in general, and public assistance provinces in peculiar, are discussed. Particular attending is given to neo-liberalism as a force that transforms political reasons and has deductions on all societal kingdoms. In migration surveies, policies play an of import function in footings of regulations of entry and issue. In this research undertaking nevertheless, farther accent is placed on policies of the LTC strategy, in which the migrators are embedded. This relates to the wider and structural facets that shape migration procedures.


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