Breaking down my first Swiss hospital bill


Today I received the bill from my recent visit to a local emergency clinic for heart palpitations. In total, it came out to 415.85 Swiss francs, or 426.76 in USD. And since it falls below my annual deductible (in Switzerland they call it a “franchise”), I had to pay the full amount out of pocket.

Where did this number even come from? Interestingly, the bill broke down all of the costs in detailed Swiss fashion. They include….

Initial 5-minute consultation: CHF 17.86

Supplement for family medicine services at the doctor’s office: 10.44 (no idea what this is)

Consultation for people over 6 and under 75 years of age requiring more care (5 minutes or longer): 35.72

Dossier review for people over 6 and under 75 years of age requiring more care, without the patient present: 35.70

Complete examination with the doctor: 94.85

Support, monitoring and surveillance in the medical office for people over 6 and under 75 years of age requiring more care: 61.79

Electrocardiogram (ECG) test: 32.57 (very surprised by the relatively low cost of this, since the test was by far the most time- and labor-intensive and exhausting part of the visit)

HIBIDIL, 15ml: 0.95 (some sort of disinfectant)

Venipuncture for the blood test: 7.86

D-dimer: 32.00 (tests for a problematic type of blood clot)

Hemogram III, automated; hemogram II, plus 3 subpopulations of leukocytes: 10.00 (blood panel)

C-reactive protein test (CRP): 10.00 (checks for the risk of developing coronary artery disease)

Information meeting of the doctor with the patient or their relatives before a diagnostic or therapeutic intervention: 17.86

5-minute consultation at the end: 8.94 (possibly refers to the part where the doctor told me in English that he hopes I feel better)

Report written without a form, 11 to 35 lines of text: 39.29

And that brings us to CHF 415.85.

It is very expensive to live in Switzerland. And — as I have now learned — it is even more expensive to get sick in Switzerland.


Title photo by Zhen Hu on Unsplash.

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