Federal Minister of Health Daniel Bahr calls for the distribution of premiums and the end of the practice fee
The Federal Minister of Health Daniel Bahr (FDP) has again spoken out for an end to the practice fee. Bahr believes that the billion surplus in the health fund should be used to abolish the practice fee. The health insurance companies could also use the money and distribute premiums to their insured, Bahr continued.
The surplus of more than eight billion euros in the health fund has triggered heated discussions among health insurers, doctors, the pharmaceutical industry and politicians over the past few weeks about the use of financial reserves. In this connection, the Federal Minister of Health has spoken out in favor of distributing premiums to the members through statutory health insurance and abolishing the practice fee. The use of the surplus thus becomes an election campaign topic, in which there are also different views between the FDP, CDU and CSU.
Suspension or lifting of the practice fee The Federal Minister of Health Daniel Bahr told the radio station "Deutschlandfunk" that the practice fee had not fulfilled its control function and today only functions as an additional source of income for the health insurance companies. Bahr therefore spoke out in favor of suspending or lifting the practice fee, which, in his view, would noticeably benefit people from the health insurance billions' surplus. However, there is no agreement in the federal government as to the abolition of the practice fee. In contrast to the FDP, an end to the practice fee is not being considered for the CDU.
Distribution of premiums for statutory health insurers In addition to the abolition of the practice fee, the Federal Minister of Health also demanded that the surplus be distributed to members as statutory health insurance premiums. The insured could also participate in the positive financial development of the health fund. According to Bahr, numerous health insurance companies could pay out corresponding premiums to their members. Currently, however, only "nine health insurance companies in Germany" would implement premium payments, but it could "definitely make more than 30 health insurance companies", the criticism of the Federal Health Minister said in an interview with "Deutschlandfunk". (fp)
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