NL residents can expect a big increase in health insurance premiums: Menzis director

Netherlands residents must prepare themselves for a significant increase in health insurance premiums, Menzis CEO and former PvdA leader Wouter Bos said on NPO Radio 1 program Geld of je Leven.

Sources leaked that the Cabinet will announce a 10 to 12 euros per month increase in health insurance premiums on Budget Day today. “People should indeed prepare for that amount,” Bos said. “Insurers can still choose whether they go above or below that. But it is obvious that the premium will go up.”

He called the premium increase inevitable, even in this time of bills piling up. “Ninety percent of this increase can be explained by the fact that people in healthcare want to earn more. I think that’s justifiable – they should also be able to cope with the higher prices. But if wages and prices rise sharply, this immediately translates into what we have to pay for healthcare.”

Health insurers can’t automatically use their own equity to reduce the premium because the regulator DNB requires them to maintain a buffer for bad times, Bos explained. “We believe the buffer should be a little lower, but it is not up to us.”

He stressed that Menzis is very aware of the purchasing power crisis. “We believe that as a health insurance company, we have a broad responsibility. Preventing stress and debt problems is part of that. We work with municipalities and organizations that focus on debt problems. The biggest problem is if you find out too late that people have difficulties. We think we have that in order now.”

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