Health Insurance Premiums
What you need to know about health insurance premiums in Switzerland
Every autumn, the Swiss health insurers set the health insurance premiums for the coming year. A comparison is worthwhile for policyholders. This is because although the premiums for basic insurance differ, the benefits are the same. You can also reduce your premiums by choosing an alternative insurance model or by increasing the franchise.
What is the composition of the premium in the basic insurance?
The health insurance premium in compulsory health insurance varies depending on the canton of residence, income and age of the policyholder. Each health insurance fund also charges slightly different premiums. In the autumn of each year, the insurers adjust the premium amount. For policyholders, this usually means that they will have to pay more for their health insurance in the coming year. According to the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH), for example, the average premium rose by 1.2 percent to 315 Swiss francs in 2019. Depending on the canton of residence, however, the adjustment varies considerably: While some Swiss now pay 1.5 percent less, the health insurance premium for others rose by 3.6 percent.
Premium discount for alternative insurance models
If you want to lower your health insurance premium, you have several options. For example, the health insurance funds grant premium discounts if an alternative insurance model is chosen. While the standard model guarantees free choice of doctor, the alternative insurance models limit the selection of the first contact person in the event of illness. This enables savings of up to 20 percent.
The three most common models are:
- The family doctor model: In the event of illness, you first contact your family doctor.
- The group practice model: In the event of illness, you first consult a doctor in a group practice (HMO).
- The Telmed model: Before each visit to the doctor, you contact an initial consultation centre by telephone.
In addition, there is a bonus model that rewards policyholders who rarely need medical treatment. With every year in which you do not submit any bills to the health insurance company, the premium is reduced. For this, however, you pay a ten percent higher initial premium and cannot freely choose the amount of the cost sharing.
Saving through a higher deductible rate
You can also save if you increase the franchise. In the compulsory health insurance, you contribute to the cost of medical treatment and medication. This excess consists of the annual deductible and a deductible. The ordinary annual deductible is 300 Swiss francs. Up to this amount, you pay your treatment and medication costs yourself. All further costs are covered by the health insurance fund, you only pay a deductible of ten percent, a maximum of 700 francs per calendar year for adults and 350 francs for children. If you opt voluntarily for a higher deductible, the health insurance reduces the premium. The maximum possible annual deductible is CHF 2,500 for adults and CHF 600 for children.
A comparison of health insurance premiums is worthwhile
In basic insurance, insurers charge different amounts of health insurance premiums for the same benefits. It is therefore worth comparing health insurance companies. By changing your health insurance company, you can make significant savings without having to fear a loss of benefits. The premium comparison does not yet take into account the benefits of the voluntary supplementary insurances. However, a comparison of insurers is also recommended for additional insurance cover. We will be happy to advise you.