German private health insurance is an option for people who either earn over 64,350 EUR per annum (as of 2021), or are self-employed. Additionally civil servants can also acquire private health insurance, which in German is called Private Krankenversicherung (PKV). The costs of PKV vary considerably, based on what services you wish for and what circumstances you have. For a rough estimate, fill out the German private health insurance comparison form to see what others are paying for their insurance. Important criteria include your age, weight, marital status, children, existing medical conditions and more.
There are various differences between PKV, and the more common Gesetzliche Krankenversicherung (GKV).. Everyone is entitled to be insured via GKV, whereas PKV is only open to those in the categories previously mentioned. It is a legal requirement to have some sort of health insurance in Germany, with many foreign professionals based here choosing private insurance over statutory coverage.
Yet many people, especially those whom earn more, opt for PKV. One of the primary reasons is better quality of service. You get a wider range of doctors to choose from, which is an important consideration as many general practising doctors refuse to take on new statutory health insurance (GKV) clients. Having PKV coverage is a big plus to finding the right doctor. For hospital overnight stays, PKV also offers various options, depending on your plan, for your own private room, more medication, extended services, etc.
One of the more important aspects of German private health insurance, is the fixed rate of the premiums. Statutory health insurance is paid as a percentage of your salary. The more you earn, the more you pay. Private health insurance does not operate this way, and instead will depend on your overall fitness, the options you sign up for, and a few other criteria. However, as the years go buy, the PKV contributions do rise slowly in line with inflation.
So, due to the huge variability in PKV, it is recommended that you speak to a qualified broker who can guide you through the process on a non-committal basis. That way you can work out what services are best for you and your family if you have one.
The Eye Newspapers has an agreement with one of Germany's top expat-friendly private health insurance companies, HanseMerkur. For a no-obligation quote, fill out our German health insurance quote form.
Image by Marek Studzinski