Find the best German Health Insurance Company

Posted on Feb 19, 2018


Germany has 110 different statutory health insurance companies with different premium rates and different services features. Finding the best health insurance that is available in the county you live in may include a lot of research. My goal for the web scraping project was to develop an app which would do the job for you.



The German news magazine Focus provides a list of 75 health insurance companies that are open for every one who lives in the county they provide service as well as a tool to compare them. Each health insurance leads to a new website giving information about where the insurance is available, service features, bonuses, which dental services are included as well as a couple of other features. The main website was scraped using Scrapy to get the name of the insurance company, the premium rate and a list of the links for the extra information.




Giving the time limitation the main focus to differentiate the provider were bonuses and naturopathy. Bonuses include:

  • check-up
  • cancer screenig
  • skin cancer screening
  • yearly dentist visit
  • no smoking
  • BMI
  • gym membership

Naturopathy has the options of:

  • homeopathy
  • osteopathy
  • ayurveda
  • TCM
  • reflexmassage

After scraping the websites a column with the number of insured persons was added and the scraped data was cleaned and simplified. Each bonus and naturopathy column was converted to TRUE or FALSE.


The smallest insurance company is BBK MTU with 4.288 member while the Techniker Krankenkasse covers 9.937.314 members.  The so called "Beitragssatz" (premium rate) is laid down at 14.6 percent – half of that (7.3 percent) is covered by the employer and 7.3 percent plus any additional higher premium rate is deducted from the gross income. VIACTIV Krankenkasse and SECURVITA Krankenkassen have the highest rate with 16.3 percent. The Metzinger Krankenkasse has currently the lowest premium rate with 14.6 percent and covers none of the selected bonuses or naturopathy. SECURVITA Krankenkassen, IKK Südwest and IKK Brandenburg & Berlin cover all of the selected.

73 out of 75 insurance companies give out a bonus for skin cancer screening, while only 40 provide a bonus for check-ups. In naturopathy, Osteopathy is the most frequent covered feature (63 out of 75) and Ayurveda is only covered by six.


The App lets users select one of the 16 counties in Germany – their place of residence and takes their income to calculate the premium rate they would pay. Underneath the user can select seven different bonuses and five naturopathy depending on if they want that to be part of their insurance plan. The app can be found here.

Conclusion and Next Steps

You may think the premium rate increases as an insured person selects more service features, but due to the fact Germany has a law that everyone has to be insured and that health insurers are not allowed to refuse anyone, the rate mirrors the collective health of the members as well as the economy of the insurance company. Unfortunately the data of the insured is rarely made public otherwise there would be the possibility to draw conclusions from the features to the rate to see which feature is the most expensive or least profitable. Another problem was that the number of members isn't accurate some insurance companies had an updated number while others had numbers from 2016.

Next step would be to include more features to select as well as being more precise about the feature. To simplify the project the features were divided into True or False but some insurance companies may cover only 80 percent instead full coverage for certain non-necessary features.


The code for the scraping and the shiny app can be found here.




About Author

Merle Strahlendorf

Merle graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Hamburg in Germany in 2015. Since then she has worked as a US Correspondent for multiple German magazines focusing on the marketing, media and communications sector....
View all posts by Merle Strahlendorf >

Related Articles

Leave a Comment

No comments found.

View Posts by Categories

Our Recent Popular Posts

View Posts by Tags

#python #trainwithnycdsa 2019 airbnb Alex Baransky alumni Alumni Interview Alumni Reviews Alumni Spotlight alumni story Alumnus API Application artist aws beautiful soup Best Bootcamp Best Data Science 2019 Best Data Science Bootcamp Best Data Science Bootcamp 2020 Best Ranked Big Data Book Launch Book-Signing bootcamp Bootcamp Alumni Bootcamp Prep Bundles California Cancer Research capstone Career Career Day citibike clustering Coding Course Demo Course Report D3.js data Data Analyst data science Data Science Academy Data Science Bootcamp Data science jobs Data Science Reviews Data Scientist Data Scientist Jobs data visualization Deep Learning Demo Day Discount dplyr employer networking feature engineering Finance Financial Data Science Flask gbm Get Hired ggplot2 googleVis Hadoop higgs boson Hiring hiring partner events Hiring Partners Industry Experts Instructor Blog Instructor Interview Job Job Placement Jobs Jon Krohn JP Morgan Chase Kaggle Kickstarter lasso regression Lead Data Scienctist Lead Data Scientist leaflet linear regression Logistic Regression machine learning Maps matplotlib Medical Research Meet the team meetup Networking neural network Neural networks New Courses nlp NYC NYC Data Science nyc data science academy NYC Open Data NYCDSA NYCDSA Alumni Online Online Bootcamp Online Training Open Data painter pandas Part-time Portfolio Development prediction Prework Programming PwC python Python Data Analysis python machine learning python scrapy python web scraping python webscraping Python Workshop R R language R Programming R Shiny r studio R Visualization R Workshop R-bloggers random forest Ranking recommendation recommendation system regression Remote remote data science bootcamp Scrapy scrapy visualization seaborn Selenium sentiment analysis Shiny Shiny Dashboard Spark Special Special Summer Sports statistics streaming Student Interview Student Showcase SVM Switchup Tableau team TensorFlow Testimonial tf-idf Top Data Science Bootcamp twitter visualization web scraping Weekend Course What to expect word cloud word2vec XGBoost yelp