Insurance

Basic Health Insurance

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Basic Health Insurance. In order to achieve broad coverage against the risks of diseases and their consequences, an insurance system consisting of statutory and private health insurances was created in Germany.

In Germany, there is compulsory insurance in the area of ​​health insurance. The vast majority of the German population has statutory health insurance. In 2015, statutory health insurances covered 71 million people. Nine million were privately insured. There are important differences between the two lines of insurance. Those who meet the requirements for taking out private health insurance must carefully weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of both branches.

Basic Health Insurance

Statutory Health Insurance

Statutory health insurance (GKV) is open to everyone who is not already privately insured or has been classified as insurance-free. The GKV is based on the principle of solidarity. The measure of the insurance premium is the amount of income. Each member pays the same portion of his wages or salaries every month. The contribution rate currently averages 14.6 percent. In the case of employees, the employer pays half of the contribution. If the health fundraises an additional amount, the insured person must bear this alone. The amount of contribution is limited. In 2017, the income threshold was 4,350 euros. The income above this remains exempt from contributions. Children and family members without an income of their own can be insured free of charge.

Private Health Insurance

The group of those who can become a member of a private health insurance (PKV) has been limited by law. The private health insurance is open to the self-employed, civil servants and employees whose income is above the annual income limit (2017: 57,600 euros gross). With private health insurance (PKV), the amount of the contribution depends on the age and state of health of the insured person. The PKV have the right to refuse insured persons, for example if they have previous illnesses. There is no family insurance like there is with statutory health insurance. Each person needs their own insurance.

A decision with far-reaching consequences

For young and healthy people, private health insurance is very attractive because they pay significantly lower contributions here than with statutory health insurance. In addition, privately insured persons enjoy some privileges. Since the doctors are not budgeted for the treatment of privately insured patients, these patients usually get an appointment more quickly. In addition, the PKV reimburses a number of services that the GKV does not cover.

However, switching to private health insurance should be considered very carefully and made against the background of personal life planning. If the contributions increase in old age, a return to the statutory health insurance is only possible in very limited exceptional cases. You should definitely seek advice from an independent and experienced specialist as to whether a change is recommended for you and which private health insurance is best for you.

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