Healthcare in 2021: here’s what will change

medical costs
How will your medical coverage change next year? Photo credit: Pixabay

Following yearly custom, on 14 September, the Dutch government presented its budget for next year.

On “Prinsjesdag”, as it’s called, the revised health care insurance costs are also announced. For 2021, there are seven important points of which people must take note.

1. Out-of-pocket amount remains the same

The mandatory level of Eigen Risico (deductible) remains at €385.

2. Premium up

The Dutch Cabinet expects the monthly health premium to increase by a few euro per month. This was expected to be higher because of the corona crisis. But, it doesn’t seem to be as bad as first thought.

3. But so are benefits (for some)

With the increase of the health insurance premium, zorgtoeslag (health care benefit) will also increase. But that’s only the lowest income households.

4. Higher income-related contribution

It’s expected that the Inkomensafhankelijke bijdrage Zorgverzekeringswet – ZVW (the Health Insurance Act’s income-related contribution) will also rise in 2021. The government uses this money to absorb the country’s hospitals’ higher healthcare costs.

This contribution will be deducted from employees’ income. Self-employed people pay a separate levy.

5. Additional insurance more expensive?

It’s also expected that the aanvullende zorgverzekering (supplementary health insurance) will be further redressed in 2021. That’s been the trend in recent years.

More and more people are becoming increasingly aware of healthcare costs. Many people in the Netherlands only take out a supplementary policy if it benefits them. That’s if they get reimbursed more than they pay in premiums. This, of course, negatively affects health insurers.

It forces them to either reduce reimbursement packages or increase premiums. It’s, therefore, very likely that in 2021, insurers will again cut back on the additional coverage. They need to do this to cover costs.

6. New cover in the basic package (basisverzekering)

In 2021, the basic package will be expanded in several ways. Here are some of the conditions will now be covered.

  • Medicines for ovarian cancer and lymphoma
  • There will no longer be a compulsory excess for organ donors. The government considers it important that donors don’t experience any obstacles when helping needy patients.
  • Victims of sexual violence who seek help from a Centrum Seksueel Geweld – CSG (Center for Sexual Violence) within seven days are entitled to direct reimbursement of all medical expenses.

These changes are the same for all health insurers.

You’ll be informed of the exact amount of your 2021 health premium. Your health insurance provider will do this from mid-November onward. Your insurance agency will publish all the changes to your policy too. 

7. Reimbursement agreements within the European Union might change

The inclusion of these treaty agreements is part of the ongoing Brexit negotiations. What does it mean if no deals are made for 2021 onwards? For care in the United Kingdom, you’d only entitled to certain reimbursements.

That’s for emergency care costs. And only up to a maximum of the Dutch rate set out by your basic insurance. If necessary, you’d receive a supplement to the foreign price. That will come from your supplementary insurance for emergency care.

You’d then no longer be able to use the 2020 reimbursement arrangements. So, you wouldn’t be able to use your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). This is printed on the back of your health insurance card. Click here for more information about the EHIC.

And you’d not be able to use an S2 form to get permission for non-emergency care.

Source: Irene Maartens for Healthcare for Internationals Network

Editor: Melinda Walraven

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