Health insurance companies: One third levy additional contributions



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Statutory health insurance companies are cautious when it comes to collecting additional contributions in the coming year. However, further deficits are expected.

Will the statutory health insurance companies require further additional contributions from their insured persons in the coming year? As of January 1, 2011, as part of the health care reform, the general mandatory contributions to statutory health insurance will be increased from 14.9 to 15.5 percent, which has long been a matter for the black and yellow federal government. From January 1st, however, the health insurance funds can determine the amount of the flat-rate additional contributions themselves. Social associations, trade unions and consumer protection groups have therefore warned against a "head allowance" through the back door.

Premium increases to 15.5 percent from 2011 It is clear that the general premium increase in health insurance will be increased to 15.5 percent. This compensates for a large part of the deficit in the health fund. But it is also clear that the employer's share of health insurance will be frozen. This means that all future increases in premiums will be borne by the insured alone. For the coming year, however, spending in the healthcare system is expected to rise again. So far, the expenditure of the health insurers has increased massively from year to year. The obvious question here is whether the insured will be required to pay the health insurance companies additional contributions.

Two thirds of the health insurance companies want to forego additional contributions for the time being. A survey conducted by the Stiftung Warentest in all GKV health insurance companies in Germany brought light into the dark. According to the survey results, two thirds of the health insurance companies want to forego additional contributions "for the time being". Because for the cash registers such additional contributions are a “double-edged sword”. On the one hand, additional income can be booked, on the other hand, especially young members change the cash register if an additional contribution is charged. As a result, the total income could drop significantly again. For this reason, 76 out of the 114 health insurance companies surveyed asked the Stiftung Warentest to waive an additional contribution in 2011. However, due to the increase in premiums, the foundation calculated that this increase would make health insurance more expensive for an average earner with a gross salary of 2500 euros a month by 7.50 euros.

Rising additional contributions are nevertheless expected. Whether this will remain the case is questionable. According to a DGB study, the average additional contribution in 2015 could already be 33 euros a month because the expenditure is constantly increasing compared to the income and the planned savings are far from sufficient. An additional contribution of 150 euros is even predicted for the year 2025. The additional contribution is levied regardless of gross wages and is the same for all insured persons. According to the plans of the Minister of Health Philipp Rösler, "socially disadvantaged" should receive compensation. The minister has not yet said what this will look like. It becomes obvious that the rising costs will have to be borne by the insured in the future. (sb, 10/20/2010)

Also read:
DGB: Additional contributions should be stopped
PKV entry tariffs often offer less than GKV
Health insurance companies: Additional 100 euros in the future?

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