Stricter supervision for statutory health insurance companies

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Survey: Germans are afraid of monopolies and want stricter supervision for statutory health insurance companies

The Bundeskartellamt should supervise statutory health insurers more closely, as legislators are currently planning, and so do 76 percent of Germans. This emerges from a Forsa survey commissioned by the Siemens company health insurance company SBK
has been.

The draft of an Eighth Law amending the Law Against Restrictions on Competition was first discussed in the Federal Council on May 11. It stipulates strict merger control regulations and assigns a key role to the cartel office. The project is controversial, but not among the citizens. On behalf of the SBK health insurance company, the forsa polling institute surveyed over 1,000 Germans: 76 percent believe that the cartel office should also oversee statutory health insurance companies more closely when it comes to mergers and contracts. Only 16 percent think there should be exceptions for the statutory health insurance companies.

In general, the gasoline fright of the past weeks and months sits in the limbs of the Germans. 79 percent of those questioned fear that concentrating on a few providers in a market will lead to rising prices, as is the case with petrol and diesel. 17 percent do not fear this. An overwhelming majority of 91 percent see a lot of competition and a wide range of medium-sized companies as a recipe for healthy growth: Nine out of ten respondents believe that a market with a large number of medium-sized companies contributes more to the growth of the economy and job security than a market with a few large ones Providers. Only a few (6 percent) believe that a market with a few large providers contributes to economic growth.

The Germans are undecided as to whether citizens should and should have a say in shaping a functioning competition system. 48 percent of Germans believe that antitrust and competition law is an area in which citizens should have as much say as possible. Just as many believe that this is not an issue for all citizens and that politicians should take care of it with the help of experts. In addition, many Germans (58 percent) cannot see any clear advantages for themselves if there is more competition, especially in the healthcare sector, 37 percent of Germans believe that they as a patient of more competition in the
Healthcare would benefit.

The Siemens company health insurance fund supports the current draft law for stricter cartel supervision. "We can thus reach an important milestone in order to give the insured members full freedom of choice and decision-making, which they would lose with regional and nationwide monopolies," said Hans Unterhuber, CEO of the Siemens company health insurance company SBK.

Interesting result by the way: In the context of the Federal Council debate, the party Die Linke had heavily criticized the government plans. However, the forsa survey shows a different picture among voters and the grassroots: 72 percent of left-wing supporters believe that the Cartel Office should also supervise statutory health insurance companies more closely (CDU / CSU 80, FDP 75, SPD 79, Greens 67 and Pirates 80 Percent).

Author and source information

Video: The Economics of Healthcare: Crash Course Econ #29


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