8 euros additional health insurance contributions?

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Additional contributions of 8 euros per health insurance fund in this quarter: will the insured have more to come?

According to media reports, around 10 million people with statutory health insurance in Germany will have to prepare for their health insurance with additional contributions this quarter. According to the law, the insured must be informed of their health insurance at least one month before the additional contribution is due.

Those affected have the option of a special right of termination and so do not have to accept the decision idly. The collection of contributions becomes a reaction of the health insurance companies to their strained financial situation. The contribution rates for the health insurance companies have been set by law in the health reform. The health insurances receive a subsidy from the much discussed health fund for insured persons. Therefore, the money is billed to the insured and not deducted from the salary. It cannot be more than 1 percent of the income.

Next Monday in Berlin, among others, DAK, AOK Schleswig-Holstein and the Deutsche BKK want to go public on the subject of “Entry into the additional contribution” and present their financial situation.

German media suspect that these funds are likely to be the first to collect the additional contributions. So far there are no clear findings. The commercial health insurance company Hannover (KKH), advises with its board of directors from the end of February to the beginning of March 2010 on the subject.

Does the future bring even more increases? If the Federal Minister of Health, the Hanoverian FDP man Phillip Rösler, has the will, the discount agreements should be abolished. They are currently saving the cash registers millions of euros. Furthermore, the employer's contribution to statutory health insurance is to be frozen to 14 percent and the flat rate per capita introduced.

All measures that put a financial burden on the insured and health insurance companies. Measures such as the possible indirect removal of the head of the Institute for Quality and Efficiency in the Health System (IQWiG), Peter Sawicki, who is considered to be pharmaceutically critical and who works strictly according to scientific criteria, could generate additional billions for the health insurers.

Then there is still the delivery and payment of 34 million vaccine doses against swine flu pending. They will be delivered by March and around 300 million euros will be due here. Although almost half of the 9.6 million cans originally delivered from November are still left.

Not only industry experts are warning of future additional burdens for health insurers and insured persons through health policy - especially the FDP parliamentary group in the federal government. And they are surprised that the CDU, which presents itself as a people's party, has so far not stood up for its clientele in the interests of the insured. (Thorsten Fischer, naturopath osteopathy, January 21, 2010)

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