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The Main Association


 The Main Association of Austrian Social Security Organisations

The 63rd revision of the ASVG passed on 10 December 2004 by Austria’s National Council stipulated a reform of the Main Association of Austrian Social Security Organisations. The changes were to apply from 1 January 2005. The Main Association underwent a complete reorganisation in 2001. However, in October 2003, Austria’s Constitutional Court declared this reorganisation to be unconstitutional and it had to be reversed. Reform of the Main Association along different lines thus became necessary.

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The organisation in detail

The Main Association of Austrian Social Security Organisations now has only two administrative bodies instead of the previous five:

  • The Standing Conference of insurance institutions, which has regulatory and control functions and
  • The Executive Committee, which is responsible for management functions.

Responsible for day-to-day administrative tasks is an association management team which consists of an executive manager and three deputies.

Other bodies within the Main Association that have no administrative functions:

  • The Controlling Group
  • Sozial- und Gesundheitsforum Österreich [Social and Health Reform in Austria]
  • Advisory Board

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Standing conference

Membership
The members of the Standing Conference are the representatives and the deputy representatives of the insurance providers and of the largest company insurance schemes in terms of persons insured, together with three representatives of the three largest senior citizen organisations of the federal senior citizens’ council (Bundesseniorenbeirat).

Chairman and deputy chairmen
The Conference elects from among its members a chairman and three deputy chairmen who act in these capacities for a term of four years.
These represent the Standing Conference in transactions with the Executive Committee and the insurance organisations. They are also entitled to attend the sittings of the Executive Committee in an advisory capacity. The chairman convenes meetings of the Standing Conference and supervises these.

The tasks of the Standing Conference include:

  • Supervision of the activities of the Main Association (annual budget, annual accounts etc.)
  • Voting on regulations proposed by the Main Association (guidelines, model statutes, model health regulations)
  • Voting on blanket agreements


Committees
The Standing Conference is empowered to form committees to help it complete its various tasks. It is required to form a committee for the purpose of the review of accounts.

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Executive Committee

Membership
The Executive Committee consists of 12 members; six of these represent employees’ groups and six represent employers’ groups to ensure parity.
The members are appointed from the members of the Standing Conference on the recommendation of public law interest groups, the Austrian Trade Union Association and the Conference of Presidents of the Regional Chambers of Commerce of Austria for a term of four years. They must be members of the general/supervisory bodies of the statutory insurance providers represented in the Standing Conference.

Chairman and deputy chairmen
The Committee elects from among its members a chairman and two deputy chairmen who act in these capacities for a term of four years.
These represent the Executive Committee in transactions with the Standing Conference, the insurance organisations and the outside world. They are also entitled to attend the sittings of the Standing Conference in an advisory capacity. The chairman convenes meetings of the Executive Committee and supervises these.

The tasks of the Executive Committee
The Executive Committee is assigned general competence and represents the Main Association in all its external activities. The Executive Committee is mainly responsible for the administrative tasks within the Main Association and with submitting proposals to the Standing Conference for approval.

Subcommittees
The Executive Committee is empowered to form subcommittees to help it complete its various tasks.
It is required to form subcommittees to deal with the areas of health insurance and sickness prevention, retirement insurance, accident insurance and information technology. The Standing Conference is authorised to send members to attend meetings of these subcommittees.

Avoidance of conflicts of interest
Representatives of the insurance providers participating in the Standing Conference and their primary deputies may not also be members of the Executive Committee (separation of administrative and control/regulatory functions).
Members of the National Council, the Federal Council, the state parliaments, the federal and state governments are also excluded from membership of the Executive Committee.

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Association management team

The Association management team consists of an executive manager and up to three deputy managers.

These are appointed by the Executive Committee from applicants who respond to job advertisements placed in accordance with the Austrian Staffing Act (Stellenbesetzungsgesetz) for a period of four years.

The management team is responsible for the day-to-day administrative tasks. It is obligated to following the instructions of the Executive Committee and must report back to the Committee on a regular basis.

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Other bodies

There are other bodies within the Main Association that have no autonomous administrative functions:

  • The Controlling Group
  • Sozial- und Gesundheitsforum Österreich (Social and Health Reform in Austria)
  • Advisory Board

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Regulatory authority

The Main Association is under the regulatory supervision of two federal ministries, the Bundesministerium für Arbeit, Soziales und Konsumentenschutz and the Bundesministerium für Gesundheit. The Bundesminister für Finanzen also has a regulatory capacity in order to protect the financial interests of the Austrian federation.

Although these bodies do not have the right to vote in any of the committees, they retain the right of veto.

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Contact information

Main Association of Austrian Social Security Organisations
Hauptverband der österreichischen Sozialversicherungsträger

Postal address: Kundmanngasse 21, A-1031 Vienna
Tel: 01/71132
Fax: 01/71132-3777
Email: posteingang.allgemein@hvb.sozvers.at
Website: www.hauptverband.at
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