The rise of health insurance premiums

If you’ve been living in Switzerland for any length of time you’ve come across this inevitable truth, private health insurance is obligatory and whichever insurance you choose to go with next year it will be more expensive.

A couple of weeks ago the Swiss population voted to keep the 61 insurance companies active versus having one government run one. This means that they are free to each put their premiums up, after approval by the government. Overall the cantons of Luzern, Zug, Schwyz, Nidwalden, Obwalden and Uri are below the Swiss average, but next year whereas the country average will be up by 4%, Nidwalden premiums will be going up by 6.8% more, Obwalden will be up 6.2%, Luzern 4,9%, Schwyz 4,4%, Uri 4,1% and Zug with 3,6% (the only canton under the countrywide average). The average of 4% translates as an extra CHF 192.- a year to be paid out per adult.

The government points out that premiums rises reflect the general usage of medical services and calls for the population to go to their doctors only when necessary.  They are also going to try to put presuure on the pharmaceutical companies to sell their medicine cheaper here, as it sometimes can be more than 50% more expensive to buy the same medicine in Switzerland than it is abroad.

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