The National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds has taken on a central role in the German healthcare system as from 1 July 2008, being the central association of the health insurance funds at federal level in accordance with section 217 a of Book V of the German Social Code (SGB V). Its establishment is a result of the health reform that was enacted in 2007 and was a decision of the German Federal Parliament. As the central lobby of the statutory health insurance and long-term care insurance funds, it shapes the outline conditions for healthcare in Germany. Its activities are focussed on the health of the 70 million insured. The Statutory Health Insurance Funds Association is also the central representation of the statutory health and nursing care insurance funds at European and international level.
In its short history, the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds can already record initial success in the improvement of care. For instance, resolutions have been adopted on new reference prices for medicines. In long-term care insurance it has been possible to agree with the contracting partners on a system for evaluating the quality of nursing homes, as well as to define guidelines on additional nursing staff in these homes. Through official statements in the hearings of the Health Committee, for instance on the health fund and on the Act on Further Development of Organisational Structures in Statutory Health Insurance (GKV-OrgWG), the National Association of Statutory Health Insurance Funds was able to make the position of statutory health insurance clear to policy-makers.