The Rising Costs of Basic Health Insurance in Switzerland: An Analysis of the Trend and Potential Solutions

Insurance premiums are increasing steadily

In recent years, the costs of basic insurance at CSS and Helsana have seen significant increases, sparking concerns about even higher health insurance premiums in the future. In 2024, premiums rose by an average of 8.7%, following a 6.6% increase the previous year. Both CSS and Helsana reported losses on basic insurance in 2023, with costs rising by 8% for CSS and 4.7% for Helsana.

According to health economist Heinz Locher, these increases may be indicative of a new trend rather than just a catch-up effect from the pandemic. Locher warns of the possibility of further significant premium increases in the coming years due to financial difficulties and rising personnel costs due to labor shortages.

Several factors contribute to the rising expenses for basic insurance, including increased costs of medications, inpatient hospital treatments, and an expanded catalog of benefits. Additionally, there is a high demand among the population for better and more expensive treatments, leading to a sense of entitlement that drives up costs.

To address the imbalance in the Swiss healthcare system, experts recommend reviewing the catalog of basic insurance benefits and utilizing Health Technology Assessments (HTA) to check costs. Implementing flat rates per treatment case and encouraging smarter medical practices are also potential solutions to help curb rising health insurance premiums. Increasing the minimum deductible for patients and making service providers more responsible for costs are also possible solutions.

In conclusion, it is essential for policymakers to take action to address the rising expenses for basic insurance before they lead to even higher premiums in the future. By implementing these recommendations, we can ensure that Swiss residents have access to affordable and effective healthcare while keeping healthcare costs under control.

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