Any person taking up residence in Switzerland has to take out health insurance within 3 months of their arrival. In several situations, you will be asked for proof you are insured. If you’re employed in Switzerland for less than 3 months and you can’t submit proof of insurance from your home country that covers you, it is necessary to get Swiss insurance.

Health insurance premiums in Switzerland are not dependent on income, but are calculated based on your personal risk profile. However, the Swiss Confederation subsidizes premiums for low-income individuals/families. In 2004, the basic insurance premium was around CHF 250/month.

Swiss insurance schemes only cover individuals, not families as in some other European social security schemes. You will therefore have to insure each household member, including children.

How to get basic health insurance

Basic health insurance is provided by many public and private insurance companies – you are free to choose. Benefits are identical from all providers, but premiums can vary considerably, so shop around and have a look at www.comparis.ch.

Note that in Switzerland, health insurance will normally not be arranged by your employer. You have the responsibility of contacting providers and arranging the insurance yourself. Only if your employer has an agreement with a specific insurer and pays part of your premiums (which rarely happens), will you be forced to choose a specific provider.

Additional insurance

About 40% of the Swiss population chose to top-up their insurance cover. This is commonly in order to have more comfortable accommodation during a hospital stay or wider choice of treatments. In contrast to basic insurance, insurers may refuse applicants for additional insurance or only accept them subject to certain conditions. Private medical and additional dental cover may only become effective after a three-month qualifying period.

Dental care is provided mainly by private dental practices and public dental clinics. Note that dental treatment is extremely expensive in Switzerland, so consider getting a dental checkup at home before you leave or take advantage of a trip home. Dental treatment is not covered by the basic health insurance scheme. Since the cost of a treatment is prohibitive in Switzerland, consider getting additional dental insurance if you stay for a while. Here you can find a list of Dentists in Pfaeffikon:

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Hospitals (Krankenhaus, Spital/hôpital) are marked with the letter "H" in white on blue background along with regular street signs and are also listed in the yellow pages under Spitäler or hôpitaux. Except for emergencies, you usually have to be referred to a hospital by a doctor. You normally have to visit a hospital in the canton where you are residing, although there are exceptions to this. Close to Pfaeffikon is:

Spital Lachen
Oberdorfstrasse 41
8853 Lachen

Tel: +41 55 451 31 11
Fax +41 55 451 30 31

Outpatient medical care is largely taken care of by private doctors and by outpatient departments of public hospitals or private clinics. Normally, patients are free to choose their own doctor and also have unlimited, direct access to specialists:

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