Rising health insurance costs angers Dutch MPs

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Dutch parliamentarians are shocked and outraged by the high premium increase health insurer DSW announced on Monday. The insurer announced an increase of 9.4 percent, much higher than the 3.5 percent the Ministry of Health predicted on Budget Day.

SP parliamentarian Renske Leitjen called the Ministry's estimate "misleading", the Telegraaf reports. "The government seems to be significantly wrong in their estimate.", Pia Dijkstra of the D66 added. "Another misjudgement", PVV MP Reinette Klever said. "The premium is rising more than twice as much as expected.

According to the newspaper, Minister Edith Schippers of Public Health assumed that, like last year, the health insurers would invest 2 billion euros of their own money into cushioning the premiums. So far DSW at least is unwilling to invest as much as last year. The question now is how many others will.

The PVV and CDA think the Minister should make sure that the insurers take more money from their reserves. The D66 is concerned about how the increased premiums will affect the purchasing power of many people.

The DSW premium increase is the first of many to be announced. The other health insurers will announce their premiums in the coming weeks, usually by mid November. According to the Telegraaf, DSW's announcement is generally a good indication of what the other insurers will do.