No additional insurance with health insurance companies

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Are additional tariffs by health insurance companies prohibited?

Federal Minister of Health Philipp Rösler: In future, supplementary insurance from the statutory health insurance companies will no longer be possible.

(09.09.2010) The dismantling of the statutory health insurance continues. Because if the will of the Federal Minister of Health Philipp Rösler (FDP), statutory health insurance companies should no longer be able to offer any additional benefits in the future. Only recently did the Federal Minister of Health speak out at a panel discussion organized by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for a strict separation of private health insurance and statutory health insurance. If the minister gets through with his demand within the coalition, the health insurance companies should no longer be able to offer any additional benefits in the future. This item should then only be reserved for private health insurance companies.

After the last health reform of the then black and yellow federal government, the statutory health insurance companies were allowed to offer supplementary insurance. As a result, legally insured homeopathy could also take advantage of services, medical treatment or single beds in hospitals. The basic idea of ​​the health reform at that time was to promote competition among health insurance companies. Because in the course of the reform, a uniform health insurance contribution was decided. Previously, the competition between the funds was given by the different contribution rates. First of all, the FDP wants to reverse a so-called "blurring between private and statutory health insurance". But it was precisely the additional services that brought the statutory health insurance companies additional income that is urgently needed in the fight against the current poor financial situation. Because according to estimates by experts, the health fund is threatened with a minus of around 11 billion euros. According to the current state of knowledge, the introduction of additional contributions will not change anything.

For this reason, it is all the more incomprehensible why the Federal Ministry of Health wants to ban the additional services again. It only leads to the conclusion that the FDP wants to strengthen private health insurance to the disadvantage of the statutory health insurers. It is also planned to extend the compulsory discount to private health insurance. Such discounts were previously reserved only for the SHI. According to the Federal Ministry of Health, the plan is to clearly separate statutory health insurers with their special rights from private ones.

Strengthening private health insurance.
Does it mean that health insurance patients will no longer be able to use additional benefits in the future? Not at all, because the plans are supposed to strengthen private coffers. It is planned that compulsory health insurance fund members will only receive such additional benefits from private health insurance. This means that health insurance patients remain insured with their health insurance company, but, for example, foreign health insurance can only "buy" from the private health insurance company. This means that billions of dollars are waiting for the private sector. The Association of Private Health Insurance (PKV) is therefore delighted with so many gifts from the federal government. There is a lot of interest here and of course support these projects. You also see no reason to compete with statutory health insurance.

Government politicians also blow into the same lobby horn. State Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Health Daniel Bahr (FDP) said that the supplementary insurance provided by the statutory bodies is only a bait anyway to keep insured persons who could switch to private health insurance. The Union also pleads for the additional benefits to be withdrawn from the statutory health insurers. Health policy spokesman Jens Spahn (CDU) said it was not the task of health insurance companies to "poach in the area of ​​private health insurance". However, as mentioned, this newly enforced "separation" is very one-sided, as one is also planning to introduce so-called compulsory discounts for private health insurance. In addition, there are fears that high earners will now switch from statutory health insurance to private health insurance. For this purpose, one specifically wants to reduce the assessment limit to one year so that as many as possible find their way into the private health insurance.

FDP clientele policy in favor of the PKV
Clear criticism of the project came from the ranks of the health insurance companies and the opposition. Because, unlike in the private health sector, all members can receive supplementary insurance from the statutory health insurance companies. With the PKV, a health check is always required for health insurance. The private can choose their insured, but not the statutory health insurance. All people who are entitled to it must be compulsorily insured here. For this reason, even the AOK federal executive board is calling for the options for additional tariffs to be expanded further by the statutory authorities. The health policy spokesman for the SPD Dr. Karl Lauterbach also sees the planned measures to bleed out of the solidarity-based health system. Lauterbach sees the planned change as a benefit for private health insurance at the expense of statutory social insurance. (sb)

Also read:
Government showered PKV with gifts
Rösler wants to protect the pharmaceutical lobby
FDP wants to strengthen private health insurance
Health insurance withdraws from the optional tariff

Image: Margot Kessler /

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