National Council committee wants to prevent advertising through premium money

In future, health insurance companies should be prohibited from financing advertising for compulsory basic insurance through premium money. This is the demand of the responsible National Council committee.

(Symbolic image: Keystone/Christian Beutler)

The National Council's Social Security and Health Committee (SGK-N) has approved a corresponding parliamentary initiative by former National Councillor Baptiste Hurni (SP/NE), as reported by the parliamentary services on Friday. The decision was made by a wafer-thin twelve votes to twelve with a casting vote by committee president Barbara Gysi (SP/SG).

The proposal will next be examined by the Council of States' sister committee. If the bill were to pass through parliament, health insurers would only be allowed to finance advertising for their products in the supplementary insurance sector with the premiums collected there.

Today, advertising for compulsory health insurance can also be booked by insurers as an administrative expense and is therefore financed via the premiums of the insured persons. In 2022, these advertising costs amounted to just under CHF 73 million, as the SGK-N wrote in the press release.

The majority of the Commission pointed out that basic insurance is compulsory and that advertising serves neither prevention nor health promotion and therefore brings no added value. Therefore, the corresponding expenditure should not be financed by premiums. The current practice was "no longer acceptable" in view of the continuous rise in premiums. (SDA)

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