How does co-determination work?
By enacting the elections for the governing boards of social insurance institutions, the legislators enshrined the right of insurees to democratic co-determination in the social insurance system. In free elections by secret ballot, members elect their representatives to the Supervisory Board.
TK is a self-governing corporation under public law. As such, it performs public duties within the scope of the German Social Code; these duties are regulated by its members and employers on their own responsibility. TK’s benefits and services are financed by contributions. A public corporation is subject to government supervision; in TK’s case, this supervision is assumed by the Bundesamt für Soziale Sicherung [German Federal (Social) Insurance Office].
According to a Forsa survey commissioned by TK, 71 per cent of adult-age Germans want to be more involved in health policy decisions. Three-quarters of the members covered by social insurance were in favour of being able to vote for themselves in elections for the governing boards of social insurance institutions.
How do I participate in the co-determination process?
Since not all insurees and employers can be consulted for each of the decisions to be made, representatives are required to represent the interests of both groups. Fifteen representatives for each group make up the Supervisory Board, which undertakes the self-governance functions on behalf of the entire community of insurees.
These representatives are elected during the elections for the governing boards of social security institutions. By voting in the elections, insurees and employers are involved in the fundamental decisions of TK through their representatives on the Supervisory Board.
It is also important to keep the topic of "elections for the governing boards of social security institutions and self-governance" current during the time between the elections for the governing boards of social insurance institutions and to convey it in a positive manner, especially to young people. For this reason, the social insurance institutions have created the joint selbstverwaltung.de website for example, which has been online since 2014. On this website, you can learn why social self-governance is directly relevant to the citizen, where it has a say, what it contributes to social coexistence and why it is efficient for those who pay contributions.