'Contributing tsunami' to 2023: the additional costs of statutory health insurance continue to rise - Economy

More than one in four of the 73 million people with statutory health insurance will have to pay higher contributions for their health insurance this year. This is reported by Welt am Sonntag based on an assessment of the list of contributions published by the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Trusts (GKV) at the beginning of the year. Accordingly, 19 out of 97 statutory health insurances increased the additional contribution.

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It includes nine of the 11 AOK funds. Nearly 21 million people are insured with just those nine. Only nine Health Insurance Funds for Much Smaller Companies (BKK) reduced the contribution at the start of the year. The most expensive statutory health insurance in 2022 is the BKK24 nationwide with a rate of 17.1 percent, and the cheapest is the BMW BKK at 14.9 percent.

Health insurers now see the new federal government as an obligation. “If politicians do not tackle this effectively, there will be a tsunami contribution in 2023,” said Andreas Storm, chief executive of DAK-Gesundheit, the third largest fund. He assumes that without the additional €14 billion in federal support, contributions would have risen on average by not just 0.1 percentage point but by 1 percentage point as early as 2022.

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“Now we urgently need a ruthless cash drawdown of funds for statutory health insurance and long-term care insurance through 2025,” says DAK representative Storm. This is an urgent task for the new federal government. “Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner has to answer the question of how GKV will continue to be funded with the budget he submitted at the beginning of March.” Only then will it be possible to prevent a sharp rise in contribution rates in the coming years.

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Crises can only be avoided through special government payments

“The financial outlook for GKV statutory health insurance has clouded recently,” said Carola Riemann, the new chair of the board of directors for the AOK-Bundesverband newspaper. One billion looming gaps in 2021 and 2022 could have been filled only with special government grants and the use of cash reserves.

In the case of AOKs, it was added that the key to the new allocation of benefits from the Health Fund was largely at their expense. All this made contribution adjustments necessary. “For 2023, there are again signs of a GKV deficit of the same magnitude,” Riemann said.

For all health insurers, the contribution consists of the general contribution rate of 14.6% of gross income and an additional contribution that each health insurer can set for itself. Both parts of the contribution are half paid by the employer and the other half by the employee. In the event of an increase in the additional contribution, the insured has a special right to terminate. (KUNA, AFP)

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