Question of principle resolved in favour of Helsana+

The Federal Administrative Court has confirmed that Helsana can also offer its bonus programme to those with basic insurance from the Helsana Group. The Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC) had instituted legal proceedings with a view to ending this practice. The Court has ruled that this is not a data protection issue and that Helsana’s approach is compatible with the Federal Health Insurance Act.

28.03.2019

With the Helsana+ app, it is easy to convert various activities – especially health-promoting ones – into bonuses such as cash payments, payments in kind, or vouchers. The bonus entitlement applies to those with both basic and supplementary insurance from the Helsana Group. At present, there are over 90,000 participants.

In June 2018, the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner (FDPIC) instituted legal proceedings against Helsana at the Federal Administrative Court. The FDPIC was of the opinion that individuals with only basic insurance must not receive cash payments. He argued that this was an unlawful premium reimbursement and also criticised the automatic checking of consent for those with basic insurance.

Helsana wins on the question of principle

The Federal Administrative Court has now ruled in Helsana’s favour on the key points: Helsana+ can continue to be made available to those with only basic insurance and to reward their activities with cash payments. The Court ruled that the offer was “compatible with the Federal Health Insurance Act” and held that this was not a data protection issue.

Criticism from the Federal Administrative Court already implemented

In particular, the Court was critical of the fact that users give their consent by clicking rather than by providing a signature. Prior to the proceedings brought by the FDPIC, however, Helsana had already agreed with the Commissioner to adapt the in-app procedure for demonstrating whether basic insurance is in place. Helsana can therefore continue to operate as before.

“The verdict confirms that we’re on the right path with Helsana+, including with regard to data protection law. We’re confident that Helsana+ will continue to enjoy active use,” says Daniel H. Schmutz, CEO of the Helsana Group. “The verdict is welcome news both for us and for our customers.”

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