In 2024, premiums for basic insurance increased by an average of 8.7 percent, with core insurance losses reported by both CSS and Helsana in 2023. Experts believe that rising costs of basic insurance are not just a temporary effect of the corona pandemic but a sign of things to come. Swiss health economist Heinz Locher warns that the Swiss population should prepare for further significant increases in health insurance premiums in the coming years.

The Swiss healthcare system is facing financial difficulties due to a lack of qualified workers and potential staff costs in the future. Several reasons have been cited for the increase in basic insurance costs, including higher drug costs, hospital treatment costs, expanding benefits in basic insurance, greater population demands for better treatments, and incentives for “overtreatment” in the system.

To solve these problems and prevent imbalances in the Swiss healthcare system, experts propose various measures such as reviewing the benefits catalog of basic insurance, implementing a health technology assessment (HTA) to check costs, using indication boards for multidisciplinary advice on medical procedures, promoting “smarter medicine” initiatives to avoid unnecessary treatments, adjusting deductibles to increase patient contributions for medical expenses and making providers more accountable by using flat rates per case for medical reimbursements. By taking these steps, the Swiss healthcare system can control costs and prevent further increases in health insurance premiums.

By Samantha Johnson

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