The insured person has to pay a contribution – the health insurance premium – every month in order to be covered by health insurance. The premium level may change every year. The health insurance fund will write to the insured person in autumn to notify them of the new premium (at which point you can change health insurance fund, but be aware of the notice periods in the insurance contract). When you start paying the new premiums the health insurance fund will send a health insurance card with your insurance number. You should always keep your card with you, as you will have to show it at the pharmacy, at your doctor’s, or at the hospital.
The health insurance fund premiums differ depending on the fund and where you live. All health insurance funds provide the same benefits under the basic insurance. The premiums also differ according to the type of insurance you choose and the excess – the amount you have to pay before the insurance starts to assume the costs.
You can choose your type of insurance yourself. You will pay lower premiums, for example, if you choose a type of insurance that does not let you choose the doctor you want. This means you will have to go to a specified general practitioner or a HMO (a health centre) first.
Contact your health insurance fund for more detailed information. It is worth comparing different health insurance funds.