Health: Lauterbach: Health insurance contributions will have to increase in 2024

Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach expects contributions to increase slightly in view of the billions in deficit in statutory health insurance.

Health: Lauterbach: Health insurance contributions will have to increase in 2024

Federal Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach expects contributions to increase slightly in view of the billions in deficit in statutory health insurance. "Finance Minister Christian Lindner has made it clear that the tax subsidies for statutory health insurance cannot be increased," Lauterbach told the editorial network Germany (RND/Tuesday). "With me there will be no cuts in benefits. The contribution rate to statutory health insurance will therefore have to rise slightly again next year."

After secured finances in 2023, the statutory health insurance companies expect another deficit next year. The central association expects a gap of between 3.5 billion and 7 billion euros. Without countermeasures, this would result in an increase in the average additional contribution of 0.2 to 0.4 percentage points.

Deficit - but not that high

He does not assume that the deficit will be 7 billion euros, said Lauterbach. "Nevertheless, there will probably be a deficit." He rejected calls for an increase in the contribution assessment ceiling. An employee's income is subject to contributions up to the contribution assessment limit; everything above this is non-contributory. This year the value is 59,850 euros per year (4987.50 euros per month).

A minus of 17 billion euros was actually expected for this year, but the government had counteracted this with a financial package with various measures last autumn. The officially expected average additional contribution rate had been raised from 1.3 to 1.6 percent. The additional contributions are on top of the general contribution rate of 14.6 percent of income, which employer and employee share. Ultimately, each fund can set the additional contribution itself, depending on their financial situation.

Last year, the 96 health insurance companies reported a surplus of around 451 million euros. But even then, spending had already risen by 4.4 percent.

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