How to Select Health Insurance in Germany

How to Select Health Insurance in Germany

Health insurance is mandatory for all residents in Germany. It covers necessary healthcare expenses such as medical operations, therapy, and medication when you are ill. There are two primary health insurance systems in Germany:

  1. Public Health Insurance:

Managed by non-profit health insurance funds. Cost is a percentage of your income, with consistent rates and coverage among public health insurers.

  1. Private Health Insurance:

Managed by private insurance companies. Cost depends on your age and health condition at signup, providing more flexible coverage options. The choice between public and private health insurance depends on various factors, including your employment status, income, and age.

Public Health Insurance Options:

If you earn under €66,600 per year, public health insurance is compulsory. If you earn over €66,600 per year, you can choose between public and private health insurance. Public or private health insurance options are available. Public or private health insurance options are available. Students can choose public or private health insurance. Those over 30 years old, newly arrived in Germany, may be compelled to opt for private health insurance. Both public and private health insurance options are available. If receiving ALG I or Bürgergeld, public health insurance is mandatory. Both public and private health insurance options are available. Private health insurers may reject those with low income. Both public and private health insurance options are available.

Cost of Public Health Insurance:

Contribution is 9.0% to 10.2% of income for employees. Maximum price for income over €59,850 per year is around €470 per month. Minijob holders pay around €210 per month. Students under 25 pay a reduced student tariff, approximately €120 per month. Self-employed individuals contribute 18.0% to 20.5% of income.

Benefits of Public Health Insurance:

Adjusts to income, making it cost-effective. Affordable for students. Covers dependents for free (Familienversicherung). Simple and straightforward to use. No additional charges for pre-existing conditions.

Disadvantages of Public Health Insurance:

Can be expensive for young professionals with high incomes. Longer wait times for doctor appointments. Limited coverage for special treatments. Application difficulties for self-employed non-EU freelancers.

Private Health Insurance:

Private health insurance covers approximately 11% of German residents and offers distinct advantages and disadvantages.

Cost of Private Health Insurance:

Cost is influenced by age, health condition at signup, and chosen coverage level. Deductibles and no-claims bonuses may affect the final price.

Benefits of Private Health Insurance:

Faster access to doctor appointments. Customizable coverage options. Potential for lower payments with higher deductibles. Savings with no-claims bonuses.

Disadvantages of Private Health Insurance:

Higher costs when healthcare is utilized. Involves more paperwork and upfront payments. Affordable when young, but expenses may rise with age. Can be expensive for those with pre-existing health issues.

Who Can Have Private Health Insurance?

Voluntarily insured individuals can choose between public and private health insurance. Self-employed individuals, students, doctors, and civil servants can opt for private health insurance. Acceptance is subject to health tests, and private insurers may reject individuals with serious health problems.

What Private Health Insurance Covers:

Covers essential healthcare, often with additional benefits. More control over covered services and optional extras. Choosing private health insurance requires careful consideration of individual circumstances. Consulting a health insurance broker, who provides free assistance, can help navigate the options offered by different insurance companies

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