Health insurance premiums will rise sharply in Switzerland, says Santésuisse
Santésuisse, the umbrella association for health insurance providers in Switzerland, has said that with the cost of healthcare rising, a 10 percent increase in health insurance premiums will be necessary for 2023. They noted that costs for medicines, hospitals and treatments rose by more than 6 percent in 2021, with costs expected to rise further in 2022 and 2023.
Price of Swiss health insurance to rise by 10 percent in 2023
Santésuisse director Verena Nold told the Keystone-SDA news agency that the price of supplemental and basic health insurance in Switzerland should rise by an average of 10 percent in the coming year. While the association predicted that prices could rise even more in some cantons, it admitted that it did not know what specific prices have been submitted by providers to the government for approval, only that they will be high.
The association cited healthcare prices as the main reason for premium increases, with medical costs increasing by 6,4 percent on average in 2021, and increases of 4 percent expected in 2022 and 2023. The biggest price rises in 2021 were found in the TARMED outpatient treatment system (10 percent), tariffs for doctors (7 percent) and medication (6 percent), according to Santésuisse economist Christoph Kilchenmann.
Santésuisse calls for cheaper healthcare costs in Switzerland
"We don't see any trend reversal in healthcare costs," Nold told Keystone-SDA. To help reduce costs, the director called for a reduction in the cost of medicine, as Switzerland currently spends almost 8 billion francs on medication every year. Price reductions could be achieved, according to Nold, by reducing the price of “generic medication” and linking the price of advanced medicines to their effectiveness.
Other ideas include introducing a flat rate for some outpatient services and a reduction in the number of “freelance” doctors in the healthcare system. Finally, Nold said that “ineffective therapies” should be removed from the list of benefits allowed under basic health insurance, although she did not say what these therapies were.
Nold told Watson that health insurers are willing to do their part to help reduce insurance costs, as they have already spent 4 billion francs trying to reduce premiums in 2021. However, she conceded that unlike in 2021, 2022 has seen healthcare costs rise much faster than premiums, in a period of weak financial markets.
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