LATVIA: private health insurance still makes a very small part of the market

8 November 2022 — Marina MAGNAVAL
According to the Association of Latvian Insurers (LAA), a gradual increase in interest in private individual health insurance was observed during Covid-19. The head of the association Janis ABASINS noted that the war and insecure situation in the region could further increase interest in the near future, reports.

As Janis ABASINS explained, the reason why the number of individual health insurance policy holders is slightly increasing could also be related to general changes in the labor market. "There is a growing segment of employees who provide their services to several employers. Therefore, they are independent employees, and an independent employee has to take care of himself, as no employer takes care of him", said the head of the association. According to ABASINS, the private health insurance segment is still very small - below 1% of the health insurance market. According to his estimates, the health insurance market could reach EUR 130-140 million this year, with only EUR 1 million coming from private health insurance.

"This year we can observe a trend that the interest of individuals in health insurance is growing. And the increase of new customers this year, if we compare with the same period last year, is about 30 to 40%", said Sanita Ozolina, representative of IF insurance. The company admits that the increase is related to several aspects. Such as - health care costs are increasing, the labor market is growing, including foreigners coming to Latvia.

"Because that market is so big, very little space is left for health insurance of individuals. With such a small market, it's not a business, it's more like a hobby. Accordingly, doing a hobby requires time and money, which doesn't really pay off", said Uldis Dzintars, a member of the board of the insurance company Balta.

Health insurance in general is the largest insurance segment in Latvia, also surpassing property insurance, MTPL and Motor Hull. In addition, the health insurance market in Latvia is also the largest in the Baltic States, but individual health insurance still makes up a very small part of it.

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