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Swiss health insurance costs to rise further in 2019

Summary:
More bad news for Swiss household budgets was released today for residents of all but three Swiss cantons. © Hai Huy Ton That _ Dreamstime.com Health insurance premiums in 2019 will be on average 1.2% higher than in 2018 across Switzerland as a whole. However, within this figure there are significant cantonal variations. Hardest hit will be residents of Valais (+3.6%) and Neuchâtel (+3.1%), while those of Appenzell Inherrhoden (-1.5%), Uri (-1.5%) and Zug (+0%) will be spared a shock induced rise in blood pressure. In addition, averages in cantons with moderate increases, such as Vaud (+1.2%), conceal nasty surprises. Government rule changes and fiddling by insurers have conspired to leave some far poorer. The main change is federal government tinkering to reduce the burden on 19-25 year

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More bad news for Swiss household budgets was released today for residents of all but three Swiss cantons.

© Hai Huy Ton That _ Dreamstime.com

Health insurance premiums in 2019 will be on average 1.2% higher than in 2018 across Switzerland as a whole. However, within this figure there are significant cantonal variations.

Hardest hit will be residents of Valais (+3.6%) and Neuchâtel (+3.1%), while those of Appenzell Inherrhoden (-1.5%), Uri (-1.5%) and Zug (+0%) will be spared a shock induced rise in blood pressure.

In addition, averages in cantons with moderate increases, such as Vaud (+1.2%), conceal nasty surprises.

Government rule changes and fiddling by insurers have conspired to leave some far poorer. The main change is federal government tinkering to reduce the burden on 19-25 year olds. The flip side of this is higher premiums for those under 19 and over 25.

For example, a family of four in Vaud (parents over 25 and kids under 19), with mum and dad opting for the maximum deductible for themselves and no deductible for the kids, could see their family health insurance bill rise by more than 7%. This comes on top of a similar rise last year.

There is little that can be done to avoid the pain – basic health insurance is compulsory in Switzerland. Higher deductibles help, but less than they used to. Some insurers offer cheaper plans for those happy to consult their family doctor first rather than going directly to specialists or for going to a designated pharmacy.

For the footloose, moving canton is the best remedy. The family above would make a saving of around CHF 4,000 a year if they moved from Vaud to Appenzell Inherrhoden.

Next year’s premiums can be checked here.

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