According to Jelf Employee Benefits, a leading insurance consultancy, there has been a sharp increase in on-the-spot fines for people in the Netherlands. Individuals who don’t have the right international private medical insurance (PMI) in place are susceptible to these penalties.
Anyone working or living in Holland must have private medical insurance from a provider that is fully recognised by the Dutch health authorities. If the cover is unlicensed or insufficient you may be liable for a fine. You can potentially be fined twice a year if your health cover doesn’t meet the required standards. The fine is 130% of the premium health package.
“Expats and foreign nationals are particularly targeting by the authorities, and we are urging employers and individuals to take note of this enforcement,” said Sarah Dennis, international healthcare director at Jelf Employee Benefits.
“International healthcare can have a completely different set of rules to your home country, this is a further reason employees and employers must seek advice from an expert.”
In March 2011, College voor Zorgverzekeringen (CVZ), the Board of Health Insurers, launched their campaign to reduce the number of people without health insurance in the Netherlands. Since then, over 100,000 people have taken up health insurance. However, there are an estimated 55,000 people who have failed to do so.
Health insurance is compulsory in the Netherlands and costs around €1,200 a year. Individuals are free to choose which insurance company they use. Insurers cannot refuse to cover someone if they are applying for basic coverage, regardless of their health history, age or gender. The basic level of insurance covers most medical treatments, though policyholders are free to take out supplementary packages to cover dental care, physiotherapy, alternative medicine etc.
For more information on compulsory health insurance in the Netherlands visit the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (available in 11 languages).