It is compulsory for every person living in Switzerland to be insured with a health insurance fund (Krankenkasse). The health insurance fund insures you against costs in the event of illness, pregnancy, or an accident. This means you will only have to pay a small part of the costs for doctor’s visits, hospital stays, or certain medicines. The health insurance fund will pay the rest.
What is known as basic insurance is compulsory. Health insurance funds have to include everyone in basic insurance, regardless of age and health. People can choose whichever health insurance fund they wish.
Everyone is covered by basic insurance for the same benefits, which includes, for example, treatment at a doctor’s surgery and in hospital, medicines prescribed by a doctor and laboratory tests, psychotherapy and physiotherapy, check-ups during pregnancy, vaccinations, paediatric health checks and some of the costs of emergency transportation. Standard dental treatment is not covered by basic insurance.
You can voluntarily take out top-up insurance, for which you will have to pay additional premiums. This will pay for additional benefits such a dental treatment, or the comfort of a single or two-person room in hospital. Basic insurance with no top-up (= general insurance) will cover the costs of staying in a four-bed room on a general ward.
The health insurance fund includes accident insurance. Working people are, however, already insured against accidents by their employers. If this applies to you, you can ask the health insurance fund to remove the accident insurance from the insurance, which will reduce the premiums.