Don't over-insure yourself, minister cautions

16th December 2005, Comments 0 comments

16 December 2005, AMSTERDAM — Many people could save hundreds of euros a year by carefully monitoring how much supplementary health insurance cover they have, Health Minister Hans Hoogervorst said on Friday.

16 December 2005

AMSTERDAM — Many people could save hundreds of euros a year by carefully monitoring how much supplementary health insurance cover they have, Health Minister Hans Hoogervorst said on Friday.

He said this during an interview with newspaper 'Algemeen Dagblad', which is publishing a special section about the new health insurance system on Saturday.

The current two-tier, public-private system of health insurance will be replaced by a universal basic coverage on 1 January 2006. The package, provided by private insurance companies, will be roughly in line with coverage provided under the current public ziekenfonds system, but it will be more expensive.

People can take out supplementary insurance for medical costs not covered by the basic system.

"Calculate for yourself what it would cost not to be insured for the dentist or
physiotherapist. Perhaps it would be much cheaper for you than all these supplementary premiums," Hoogervorst said.

Despite concerns the new basic health insurance system will cost more while offering only limited coverage, the government insists the reform should not cut significantly into the spending power of most Dutch people.

Hoogervorst said on Thursday that he does not anticipate there will be any major problems during the switch to the new system next year.

Some commentators expect that hundreds of thousands of people in the Netherlands will become uninsured because they don't want to or can't afford the health insurance premiums.

Hoogervorst doesn't share this concern. "You are often insured for more things than is necessary. Look critically at your policies and ask yourself: 'do I really need this'."

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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