DAK & BKK Gesundheit becomes DAK Gesundheit

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DAK and BKK Gesundheit will merge in 2012

The German employee health insurance company DAK and the company health insurance company BKK Gesundheit officially announced their merger at the turn of the year. This will combine two of the largest statutory health insurers in Germany. The new health insurance company is to be continued under the name "DAK Gesundheit" with its headquarters in Hamburg. Nothing should change for the insured in the future. The additional contributions also remain.

Both health insurance companies will become "DAK Gesundheit"
From 2012, the DAK and the BKK Gesundheit want to establish a joint health insurance company entitled "DAK Gesundheit". With around 5.6 million members, the DAK is the third-largest replacement fund in Germany. According to the BKK Gesundheit, almost one million people have statutory health insurance. The health insurance fund is the third largest in Germany among company health insurance funds. After the merger, around 6.6 million people would be insured in DAK health. The board of BKK Gesundheit had already approved the merger at the weekend. Today the DAK has also agreed to form a joint health insurance company. "With this combination of two strengths, DAK Health will stand out clearly from its competitors," said DAK Chairman Herbert Rebscher. Thomas Bodmer, member of the board of BKK Gesundheit, explained: “The merger of the largest company health insurance fund and the third largest replacement health insurance fund bundles the special expertise of both partners and brings clear advantages for customers. DAK-Gesundheit will be a leader in the area of ​​company health offers. When treating many diseases, the insured benefit from a large number of medical specialist networks ”. A merger was planned a year ago. BKK Gesundheit finally canceled the merger. Internal circles had advised the Board of Directors not to approve the merger. "In the end, we found that it didn't fit," it was said at the time from DAK circles. Apparently, the differences and reservations from that time had been resolved. According to the Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ), internal circles had reported that the dramatic decline in membership of both health insurance funds was due Introduction of the additional contribution was not an adequate basis to carry out a merger.

Additional contribution remains Both insurers charge their insured persons an additional contribution of eight euros per month and member. As a result, both health insurance companies had to deal with high membership losses last year. The management board left open whether the additional contribution is due in the coming year. The BKK alone lost several hundred thousand members who exercised their right to terminate at that time. The merger should help to strengthen the market position with a new number of members. It was only in 2010 that BKK Gesundheit merged with what was then BKK FAHR. In the current annual report of the health fund, the additional contributions are justified by the shortfall in the allocations from the health fund.

In the 2010 financial year, the BKK Gesundheit had revenues of around EUR 2.636 billion, of which around EUR 2.535 billion came from the allocations from the health fund and EUR 66 million from additional contributions. This is offset by total expenditure of 2.657 billion euros. As a result, the cash register was unable to hit the black last year. Herbert Rebscher emphasized to SZ that BKK Gesundheit would now “be in the black”. The merger allows both health insurers to benefit from each other's strengths. The DAK would benefit from the age structure of the BKK Gesundheit insured, which was on average around 10 years lower than that of the DAK. With the increase in members, it is now easier to maintain the branch network. In addition, the health insurance company benefits from the expertise of the BKK in supporting corporate customers. "That will become increasingly important in the future," said Rebscher. In the course of the year, the DAK was also able to generate a surplus in the millions for the first time.

The situation of the cash register looks different today than it did a year ago. At the beginning of the year, the insured's contributions were increased as part of the health care reform. Accordingly, the allocations from the health fund have also increased. The additional contributions collected plus the increase in the contribution rate to 15.5 percent provided the statutory health insurance funds with additional income and so far prevented billions of deficits.

Members hardly affected by the merger The newly merged health insurance company will join the network of replacement health insurers. The budget of the new fund for 2012 is around 20 billion euros. The merger should not mean any additional expense for the insured of both health insurers. The health cards or health insurance cards will continue to be valid. All therapies can also be continued without problems or restrictions. The supplementary insurance policies with their preferential terms remain in place.

DAK Gesundheit third largest health insurance company With the new BKK Gesundheit, the third largest health insurance company in Germany. The top position is currently occupied by the Barmer GEK with around 8.6 million members, followed by the Techniker Krankenkasse with 7.6 million insured. With the pooling of the health insurers, the two health insurers are following a new trend. In addition to BKK Gesundheit and DAK, many other health insurers also want to merge at the beginning of 2012, such as AOK Saarland, AOK Rheinland-Pfalz and IKK Südwest to form "Gesundheitskasse Südwest". Or the BKK VBU and BKK futur for the "BKK VBU". The health insurance companies hope that the mergers will result in better market opportunities and more flexibility. (sb)

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Merger between DAK and BKK Gesundheit failed

Image: S. Hofschlaeger / pixelio.de

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