Thursday 13 May 2021

Health cover pushes Netherlands to top of European insurance league

Overall insurance costs have fallen since 1995.

Dutch residents spend more on insurance than any other EU citizens – but only because their healthcare is funded by compulsory private cover.

Figures from Eurostat showed that insurance accounted for 4.2% of household spending in 2015, down from 4.5% the previous year. The average across the European Union was 2.5%.

Despite the rising cost of health cover, the total outlay on insurance is lower than in 1995, when the figure was 5%. The increase in the excess charge (eigen risico) that patients have to pay upfront before they can claim from their health insurer is the main reason for this trend.

The Dutch insurers’ association Verbond voor Vezekeraars has published an alternative list with health cover removed, which puts the Netherlands in eighth place among EU countries. Swiss and Norwegian residents also spend more of their household outgoings on insurance.

‘Comparing spending on premiums per head of population is unfair, because in many countries health costs are paid for through taxes,’ said spokesman Rudi Buis.

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