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International healthcare news: Merkel seeks agreement on German health insurance

German chancellor Angela Merkel has met with representatives of the opposition parties to confirm details for a new government charter.

Under the proposals, health insurance providers will have more freedom setting minimum contributions, an issue that had sparked disagreement among the parties.

Ms Merkel’s Christian Democrats and the Free Democrats (FDP) were in talks throughout the last few days, setting up a new coalition government, due to be sworn in next week.

The FDP had been pushing for a free-market solution where healthcare provision is dependent on the amount paid.

Currently, all insurers are paid a fixed contribution rate of 14.9 per cent by employers and staff, which is then topped up by tax-funded investment and redistributed when needed.

In related news, expatriate resort-owner and former political aide Paul Crist has told Time magazine US health authorities should let American-born expats be treated in Mexico.

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