Health insurance: Other agreements

This section provides information on other international social security agreements concluded by Switzerland.

Bilateral social security agreements

Switzerland has concluded agreements with numerous states regarding social security arrangements for persons transferring their place of residence or employment from Switzerland to one of these states or vice versa. Some of these agreements do not apply to health insurance but indirectly affect the health insurance status of posted workers.

Agreements with third countries (outside the EU/EFTA)

Switzerland has concluded bilateral social security agreements with the following states: Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina*, Brazil, Canada (including Quebec), Chile, China, South Korea, the United States, India, Israel, Japan, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, the Philippines, the Republic of San Marino, Serbia, Turkey and Uruguay (see attached table).

* Since the new agreement with Bosnia and Herzegovina came into effect on 1 September 2021, the social security agreement with the former Yugoslavia has been repealed.

New social security agreement with Bosnia and Herzegovina

The agreement with Bosnia and Herzegovina came into effect on 1 September 2021. This agreement concerns the AHV, IV and UV areas, with only indirect effects on health insurance. The maximum posting duration is two years. The social security agreement with the former Yugoslavia has been repealed with the entry into force of this convention.

For workers posted to Bosnia and Herzegovina from Switzerland, as well as non-working accompanying family members, the continued duration of health insurance in Switzerland corresponds to the posting duration specified in the relevant agreement. If these persons are compulsorily insured against illness in Bosnia and Herzegovina, they can apply for exemption from compulsory health insurance in Switzerland, provided that they have equivalent cover for treatment in Switzerland.

Workers posted from Bosnia and Herzegovina to Switzerland, as well as non-working accompanying family members, are subject to Swiss compulsory health insurance. They can apply for exemption, provided that their employer ensures equivalent insurance cover.

Agreements with European countries

Switzerland previously had bilateral social security agreements with most European countries. The agreement on the free movement of persons (AFMP) with the EU and the EFTA Agreement have replaced the bilateral agreements with the EU and EFTA Member States. However, for persons who do not fall within the personal scope of the AFMP or the EFTA agreement, the bilateral social security agreements continue to apply - for example third-country posted workers.

Further information

The Federal Social Insurance Office (FSIO) also publishes an up-to-date list of social security agreements and information on social security agreements with various countries (e.g. Australia, Chile, Canada, the United States, Japan, Macedonia, the Philippines and Uruguay). See the link below.

Further information

Health insurance: Workers posted abroad from Switzerland

In general, workers posted abroad from Switzerland remain subject to compulsory health insurance in Switzerland.

Health insurance: Posted workers in Switzerland

Essentially, posted workers in Switzerland remain subject to the social security system of their home country.

Last modification 07.12.2021

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Federal Office of Public Health FOPH
Health and Accident Insurance Directorate
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