Avoid cuts of subsidies by your public health insurance!

Change insurer before 31 January 2015!

In light of the changes to the premiums charged by insurance companies it is recommended that publicly insured patients critically evaluate how their insurance cover performs in comparison with others and to consider exercising their special right to terminate their health insurance.

With the arrival the new year, the government-mandated rate of contribution that each person must pay to German public health insurance decreased from 15.5 to 14.6 per cent. To compensate for this reduced rate of contribution, from 2015, public health insurers are able to claim an extra premium from those it insures. At the same time as charging this additional extra premium, some insurers are cutting their subsidies for osteopathy or homeopathy drastically.

What a lot of publicly insured patients don’t know is that if an insurer changes the contribution rate or decides to charge an extra premium to its customers, a person may exercise their special right to terminate their insurance cover before 31 January 2015 (see §175, Absatz 4, SGB V). For those patients who are affected by the cuts to their insurance cover for osteopathy or homeopathy, it may be beneficial to take a closer look into the extent of cover provided by other public health insurers. There are still a lot of public health insurers (e.g. BIG gesund direct, IKK Classic, BKK VBU, and many more), who have not cut their subsidies for osteopathy and homeopathy. Changing public health insurance has never been easier. Your new insurer will provide you with all the required cancellation documents.

Even if you don’t wish to change your public health insurer, an objective comparison of the insurance covers offered by different companies, allows patients to report back to their insurer on what subsidies and benefits are particularly important to them. A comprehensive subsidy for osteopathic treatments (6 treatments per annum, at 60 Euros per treatment), should in any case be included.