Mandatory limit: CDU rejection to the PKV association



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Cancellation by the CDU to private health insurers: no abolition of the compulsory private health insurance

After private health insurers demanded a lowering of the compulsory insurance limit in order to attract more customers, not only did the opposition parties clearly oppose such a request, but the CDU also received a clear rejection from the insurance companies. Jens Spahn, health policy spokesman for the Christian Democratic parliamentary group, told the “Passauer Neue Presse” that this was “not a realistic option” and could have considerable disadvantages for statutory health insurance companies.

The Chairman of the Board of the Association of Private Health Insurance, Uwe Laue; had spoken in an interview with the "Handelsblatt" for a lowering of the income limit, from which employees can switch from a statutory health insurance to private health insurance. A push that is met with little understanding both in politics and among experts such as the renowned health economist Jürgen Wasem. Currently, the compulsory insurance limit is an annual income of 52,200 euros. Everyone who earns more - but also all self-employed and civil servants - can leave the statutory health insurance and instead take out private insurance. Statutory health insurers lose a significant proportion of contributors who would have to pay the maximum rate in the SHI and would therefore ensure that the health insurance system is compensated in solidarity. The CDU is also aware of this problem and so Spahn spoke out in favor of maintaining the compulsory insurance limit, since "every additional change to private insurance would lead to loss of premium in the statutory health insurance". In addition, Spahn referred to past reports on the lack of basic coverage for some privately insured persons and stated that consumer protection for privately insured persons should be improved and that a minimum level of insurance should be prescribed for them.

Unrealistic demand from the PKV association
The chairman's call from the Association of Private Health Insurance for a lowering of the compulsory insurance limit seems somewhat unrealistic against the background of the debates about the future structuring of the health insurance system after the Bundestag election. Because here the CDU and FDP are already closest with their PKV models. On the other hand, there is the demand of the Greens, the Left and the SPD for a uniform health insurance system in which all citizens are insured and in which the particularly well-off earners make a solidary compensation through higher contributions. A model that would in principle mean an end to traditional private insurance. In the future, they would have to limit their business to selling supplementary insurance. The mood in the industry is currently correspondingly nervous.

Legal doubts about lowering the mandatory limit
However, a lowering of the compulsory insurance limit would be difficult to justify, not only politically but also legally. Jürgen Wasem told the Handelsblatt, referring to a ruling by the Federal Constitutional Court on the compulsory insurance limit from 2004: "If the legislator decides to organize social security in the event of illness by establishing a statutory health insurance fund that is financed with income-related contributions , then he must also ensure that a sufficient number of insured persons with higher incomes are insured in this SHI. ”The lowering of the compulsory insurance limit would result in a change from many healthy, childless insured persons who are net payers in the SHI to the PKV, which means that Wasem would undermine the financing principle of statutory health insurance. (fp)

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