Big premium increase planned: Your health insurance could be so expensive in 2023

This came in times of high inflation, which many consumers believe will continue to rise, and price explosions in almost all areas announcement by SPD Health Minister Karl Lauterbach: The additional health insurance contribution is to be increased by 0.3 percentage points to 1.6 percent in 2023. Together with the general contribution rate of currently 14.6 percent would then have to 16.2 percent of the gross salary for health insurance be taken away. This would make the contribution to Statutory health insurance (GKV) on one record value climb. The reason is not least the high healthcare costs caused by the corona pandemic.

The financial situation of the statutory health insurance companies is critical in the first half of 2022. Health Minister Lauterbach speaks of a “historic deficit”, but also points out that he “inherited” the difficult situation from his predecessor. A higher additional contribution should now help to get the statutory health insurance companies (GKV) out of the financial hole.

Health insurance 2023: The financial burden that insured persons have to reckon with

A health insurance contribution of 16.2 would mean a record increase, which would be felt particularly by insured persons. The general contribution rate of the GKV is fixed and enclosed 14.6 percent of gross income. In 2015, an additional contribution was introduced for those with statutory health insurance to compensate for financial bottlenecks and keep the health insurance funds more competitive. For employees and pensioners, half of the contribution is paid by the employer.

The following sample calculations show how expensive health insurance could become in 2023:

  • merit of 3000 euros gross per month: around 50 euros more per year for health insurance
  • merit of 4000 euros gross per month (current average earnings in Germany): 72 euros more per year for health insurance

Is it worth switching health insurance now?

However, decides each register individually about the amount of the additional contribution. What specifically means: Depending on the health insurance company, the sum can be higher or lower.

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The federal government’s package of measures has met with strong criticism in society. Those who do not want to accept the premium increase without further ado should find out about their own options now, explain the experts at insurance manager Clark, based in Frankfurt/Main. Those affected should therefore first check the possibility of a tariff change. “In the event of an increase in contributions, the health insurance company must provide information in good time and grant a special right of termination – an opportunity for one change of health insurance“, according to the insurance experts. Because: The additional contributions of the statutory health insurers in Germany differ significantly in some cases.

Another option is to switch to Private health insurance, which could be financially worthwhile. “For this alternative, however, those affected must meet certain requirements,” says a Clark press release. Only those who are not subject to compulsory insurance under statutory health insurance, such as the self-employed, civil servants or students, can take out private insurance. For employees there is a compulsory insurance limit, which in 2022 applies to a Gross annual salary of 64,350 euros lay. In this way, high earners could avoid the contribution increases, because despite inflation and the financial burden caused by the Corona crisis, some private health insurance companies have already announced that they will not increase their contributions in 2023. In contrast to the statutory health insurance, the contributions of the private health insurance companies are not linked to the respective salary, but to the agreed benefits, the age at the conclusion and the individual state of health.

“Contribution payers will suffer”: criticism of the concept – only short-term relief effects

The increase in the additional contribution is part of the so-called GKV Financial Stabilization Act (GKV-FinStG), for which a cabinet decision was made on Wednesday (July 27, 2022). As with Lauterbach’s announcement at the end of June, which led to widespread criticism and fears of further increases in contributions in the coming years, the majority of reactions were negative.

Doris Pfeiffer, Chairwoman of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds, explained in a statement: “Unfortunately, we have to say that even with the cabinet draft continue to achieve only short-term relief effects, but the structural problems are not solved. Among them are above all the contributors suffer, who are supposed to bear the brunt of the necessary additional income. “

The AOK Federal Association also renewed its criticism of the essential regulations of the GKV-FinStG. “This law does not contain any measures for a short or long-term stabilization of the GKV finances. Posts are boosted“Reserves withdrawn and debt incurred,” criticizes Vice-Chairman Jens Martin Hoyer in a press release. Even marginal changes compared to the draft bill, such as the one-off increase in the manufacturer discount in the pharmaceuticals sector or the suspension of the tightened regulations for raising the additional contribution for one year, would affect the basic findings not change anything.” This cosmetic adjustments reinforce the impression that the goal of sustainable financing of the statutory health insurance system has been missed by a long way. It’s about a short-lived one-year law“, says Hoyer. No structural problem will be solved with it.

Reduction of VAT on medicines?

The proposal of the AOK: The obligation for cost-covering flat rates for the health care of ALGII recipients by the federal government and the reduction of the value added tax on medicines are addressed. “It is incomprehensible why the solidarity community still has to pay the full VAT rate of 19 percent on human medicines, while the reduced VAT rate of seven percent applies to veterinary medicines, for example,” said the AOK board vice president.

The Techniker-Krankenkasse (TK) sees it similarly: A large part of the measures presented are at the expense of the contributors. More than twelve billion euros of the deficit are supposed fully funded by the contributors will. The health insurance company reports that these would be used disproportionately. Against the background of mainly funding gap caused by politics the additional and one-time federal subsidy of two billion euros is far too small.

TK is also in favor of “sensible structural reforms and a sustained reduction in spending”. As examples, she cites the increase in the financing of contributions for ALG II recipients, the application of the reduced VAT rate to pharmaceuticals and a more consistent reform step in the Drug Market Reorganization Act (AMNOG), which regulates the prices for innovative drugs in Germany.

decision in the fall

The average additional contribution for those with statutory health insurance is finally determined by a official circle of appraisers not until autumn 2022. This year, the health insurance funds will already receive an increased federal subsidy of 28.5 billion euros. The average additional contribution should therefore be kept at 1.3 percent for the time being.

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If the health insurance contribution is actually increased to the planned extent, the social contributions all in all in 2023 the highest value since 2007 reach. Another reason: the temporary reduction of 0.2 percentage points in unemployment insurance that has been in effect since 2019 will expire at the end of 2022. Since childless people pay more in long-term care insurance, all contributions add up to 40.8 percent for them in 2023. For employees with children, it is 40.45 percent of gross wages.

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