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Private Health Insurance in France

Listed author(s):
  • Thomas C. Buchmueller

    (University of California)

  • Agnes Couffinhal


While France has a universal public health insurance system, the coverage it provides is incomplete and the vast majority the French population has private complementary health insurance. Among OECD countries, the share of health care financed by private insurance is third highest behind the US and the Netherlands, two countries where private coverage is the primary source of payment for a large percentage of the population. France’s high rate of private insurance coverage is partly explained by historical factors and partly by the preferential tax treatment of employer-sponsored coverage. Because of the high rate of employerprovision – roughly half of all contracts are obtained through the workplace – coverage tends to vary with activity and industry classification. Historically, coverage was also positively related with income. In 2000, the French government introduced a new program, the Couverture Maladie Universelle (CMU), which extended eligibility for publicly funded ... Si la France a un système d'assurance maladie publique universel, la couverture qu'il propose n'est pas complète et la majorité de la population française a une assurance complémentaire privée. La France est le troisième pays de l'OCDE en ce qui concerne la part des dépenses de santé financée par l'assurance privée, après les Etats-Unis et les Pays-Bas, deux pays où l'assurance privée représente la seule source de couverture pour une grande partie de la population. L'importance de l'assurance privée en France s'explique pour partie par des facteurs historiques mais aussi par le traitement fiscal préférentiel dont bénéficient les assurances de groupe. Etant donnée qu'environ la moitié des contrats sont obtenus par le biais de l'emploi, la couverture est très liée à la participation au marché du travail et au secteur d'activité. Historiquement, le taux couverture de la population augmentait avec le revenu. En 2000, le gouvernement a mis en place un nouveau programme public, la ...

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Paper provided by OECD Publishing in its series OECD Health Working Papers with number 12.

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Date of creation: 11 Mar 2004
Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaad:12-en
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