The price of supplementary health insurance contracts, often called mutual in France, should increase next year with increases of 7 to 10% planned by the National Independent Federation of Mutuals.
Mutual federations say 2021 has been a costly year for health insurance funds due, among other things, to an increasingly aging population and higher healthcare costs.
Read more: French complementary health insurance explained
The warning of a price increase comes as the French government this week specifically asked mutuals to moderate their rates next year.
But the National Federation of French Mutuality (FNMF) said that this request is “out of touch with reality”.
“In September, [FNMF] has alerted the public authorities to the fact that health funds will be in deficit of nearly 900 million euros in the first half of 2021 alone, due to an unprecedented increase in health spending, ”the federation wrote on Twitter.
This is disputed by journalist and author Daniel Rosenweb, who wrote a book on mutual business entitled “The (Very) Black Book of Mutuals”.
“Extended health insurance companies had much less care to reimburse during the Covid-19 pandemic, so they initially saved over $ 2 billion. [euros], and in reality, according to the cabinet of Olivier Véran, Minister of Health, it is 2.8 billion [euros].
“1.5 billion euros were taken from them via the Covid tax, so they have 1.3 billion euros left,” he told franceinfo.
The consumer association UFC Que-Chooser claims that one in five people with a supplemental insurance policy pays more than € 200 per month for it.
What is a mutual?
In France, health costs are generally reimbursed by the State up to around 70% (depending on the case). It works through the vital card system.
Mutuals offer contracts that cover all or part of medical costs not covered by the public health system. The level of coverage depends on the policy and the options chosen.
It is not mandatory to have a mutual policy in France, although the majority of people do.
Since 2016, private companies in France must provide their employees with a private health insurance policy known as collective mutual.
€ 100 for people in France whose income is less than € 2,000 per month