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Massive surplus in the health fund opens up new scope for action
The surplus in the health fund will be around 12 billion euros at the end of the year, according to calculations by the statutory health insurance estimates, reports the "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung" (FAZ), citing information from "stakeholders". The financial reserves in the health system could come next year according to the results of the current calculations.
The main reasons for the surpluses in the health fund are the persistently good employment situation and increases in wages, which are reflected in higher contributions. The “FAZ” reports that the billions surpluses of the statutory health insurance funds are not yet included in the current calculations. In view of the financial reserves in the health fund, the experts also expect renewed discussions about the abolition of the practice fee and possible reductions in contributions.
Health fund revenues benefit from the good economic situation Health fund revenues have continued to grow in the wake of the good economic development and will be significantly above the originally expected result at the end of the year. In the coming year, an additional increase of around three billion euros to a total of 15 billion euros surplus in the health fund can be expected, reports the "FAZ", referring to the calculations of the circle of estimators of the statutory health insurance. The expert committee made up of experts from the Ministry of Health, the health insurance companies and the Federal Insurance Office had already taken into account the expected increases in health insurance expenditure for patient care.
Increases in expenditure by health insurance companies taken into account The experts in the large spending blocks of health insurance companies, medicines and outpatient care expect cost increases of four percent. An increase of 4.25 percent was also taken as a basis for hospital treatments, which make up around a third of the health insurance expenses at 62 billion euros. In addition, the foreseeable increases in fees for the health insurance physicians were taken into account. The health insurance companies and the medical profession had recently agreed on an increase in remuneration for resident doctors and psychotherapists by a total of 1.15 to 1.27 billion euros. With this compromise, the weeks-long dispute between the negotiating partners of the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Physicians (KBV) and the Central Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds (GKV) was initially settled.
Reduction of the contribution rate or abolition of the practice fee? Despite taking into account the significant increases in expenditure in the health care system, the health fund shows a considerable surplus, which should certainly arouse desires among the insured and politicians. For example, a renewed debate about the abolition of the practice fee or possible reductions in the contribution rate can be expected. A reduction of the contribution rate by one percentage point would cost around one billion euros, the general abolition of the practice fee around 1.9 billion euros. In view of the good financial situation, the KKH is the first health insurance company to anticipate possible developments and reimburses its insured persons for the practice fee. "The practice fee burdens unilaterally sick people and has no control effect. That is not fair, "said CEO Ingo Kailuweit, adding," We do not want to keep our insured waiting until the legislature comes to this conclusion and finally abolishes the fee. "
From the coming year, the KKH will reimburse the insured person for the practice fee of 40 euros per year when visiting a doctor, dentist or psychotherapist. The insured only have to submit their receipt for payment of the fee. However, not all members of the KKH receive a corresponding reimbursement, but this is subject to certain conditions. The KKH reports, for example, that the insured must “prove four measures for health-conscious behavior, such as participation in preventive examinations or active membership in a sports club” in order to be entitled to reimbursement of the practice fee. (fp)
Dispute over billions in surplus in the health fund