Many statutory health insurances increase their contributions. More than 37 million insured will have to pay more in the future. The good news: Switching is very easy. From Felix Petruschke
W.he thinks he opens the mailbox these days – next to the obligatory New Years greetings and special offers for winter clothes – often a letter from your statutory health insurance company. It says very briefly that the additional contribution will unfortunately have to be increased for the New Year because otherwise the benefits could no longer be financed.
A total of 40 health insurance funds increase their additional contribution by 0.1 to 0.8 percentage points. With 60 funds, the contributions remain unchanged; two health insurers lower their additional contributions slightly. This is shown by a survey by the comparison portal Bewegungskrankenkassen.de. What is noticeable here is that even the funds with the largest number of members and supposedly the most solvent, such as Techniker Krankenkasse and Barmer, increase their additional contributions by 0.5 and 0.4 percentage points respectively (see table below). Overall, “over 37 million of the slightly more than 56 million members of the statutory health insurance funds are affected by the premium increases,” explains Thomas Adolph, head of the online portal.
There are many reasons for the increase: In addition to the years of political reform backlog, the health insurers mainly cite the additional costs due to the Corona crisis. The huge number of tests are particularly important here. In addition, as a result of the pandemic, many employees were or are on short-time work. But those who earn less also pay less health insurance contributions – money that the insurers now lack.
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Failed or postponed interventions, such as hip and knee operations (which are very expensive for the health insurers and very lucrative for the hospitals), fell sharply in 2020, but the health insurers fear catch-up effects for the current year.
Background: The so-called additional contribution was introduced in 2015. It can be levied by the health insurance companies in addition to the general statutory contribution rate of 14.6 percent of the income subject to contributions. It is intended to give the health insurance companies the opportunity to compensate for financial bottlenecks and at the same time encourage competition between the insurance companies. This type of contribution increase is not capped and is paid in equal parts by employees and employers.
Cheaper yes, better no?
The new additional contributions mean considerable additional burdens for the insured: The “Spiegel” calculates, for example, that a high earner with a gross income of 5000 euros per month will have to pay 764 instead of 717 euros to the Techniker Krankenkasse in future. A lot comes together over the year.
If that’s too much for you, you should consider changing your cash register. Insured persons have a special right of termination after a premium increase. But be careful: If you want to use this, you have to cancel by the end of the month for which the health insurance fund charges the additional contribution for the first time. The termination will then take effect at the end of the month after next. So if you cancel in January, you can be in the new box office by April 1st. Health experts warn against comparing prices only. At least as important is the scope of services of the respective fund: Voluntary subsidies, for example for tooth cleaning, osteopathic treatment or for a health course, would often be more valuable than small differences in the additional contribution. Consumers can find a good comparison option on the website kassensuche.de.
Source: BÖRSE ONLINE