In Germany there is difference between public health insurance ((gesetzliche Krankenversicherung) and private health insurance (private Krankenversicherung).
Most Germans are insured via the public health insurance scheme. The level of premium (up to a maximum) depends on the person’s income. The insurance is taken out with one of the many health insurance funds (Krankenkassen), which the insured person may choose themselves.
Employees with a high income and self-employed persons may choose between public health insurance or private insurance. The premiums for private insurance depend on the health and age of the insured person. Once you have chosen private insurance, there are restrictions on switching over to public health insurance.
Since 2009, private health insurers in Germany have been obliged to accept everyone in the so-called ‘basic tariff’. The cover is comparable to public health insurance. The premium depends on age. The basic tariff is an emergency measure for those who would not otherwise be able to take out private health insurance due to a serious existing ailment or complaint.
Some patients have public health insurance as well as supplementary insurance with a private insurer.