Many people are not exactly sure whether CPF MediShield Life is enough for their medical expenses incurred in a Singapore Restructured Hospital even though there has been so much media publicity. I will try my best to answer some of the questions that was posed to me recently.
Before I start, here are some facts to note:
MediShield Life will replace MediShield on 1 November 2015. Coverage for all Singaporeans and Permanent Residents are covered automatically, including those of us who already has private health insurance plans from AIA, AVIVA, GE, NTUC and Prudential. All admissions on or after 1 November 2015 will be eligible for claims under MediShield Life. At this moment, MediShield is still active. Both MediShield plans are meant for patients who are admitted to B2 or C Wards in a Singapore Restructured Hospital like SGH, TTSH, CGH, AH and KTPH. Please note the sub limits imposed in the benefits below.
1) I already have a private insurance “Shield” plan now, should I terminate it and just keep the MediShield Life since it is “so good”?
If your budget permits and you prefer to stay in a private hospital or in the Class A or B1 Wards of a restructured hospital, then you should not terminate your existing private insurance plans. The MediShield Life plan will not be enough to reimburse the expenses incurred in these Wards. Do note that the annual premiums for private insurance plans will go into the thousands when you are in your late 60s onwards… Do set aside a budget for the premiums in your golden years.
2) Is my private insurance “Shield” plan duplicating MediShield Life?
No, your private insurance plan is an add-on to your basic MediShield Life so it is not duplicating but rather enhancing it to cover private hospital expenses as well as other benefits like organ donation expenses, pre and post hospitalisation expenses, extra cash payouts for each day of stay to help you financially, ambulance charges, home nursing charges etc…. please talk to your independent financial adviser representative (FAR) for a detailed breakdown of your plan. A separate colonoscopy or an MRI scan will cost a lot so you may want to ensure that pre-hospitalisation expenses are covered. This may happen a few weeks before you are actually hospitalised so it can’t be lumped into the hospital bill.
3)I thought the Annual Deductible from $1500 to $3000 and 10% Co-Insurance are covered by MediShield Life?
No, unfortunately you need to buy a private insurance “Shield” plan with a Rider before the annual deductible and co-insurance can be paid by the insurance company. There is no provision to add a Rider to the MediShield Life plan. The Rider can only be paid by cash. Speak to your Independent FAR on how to cover these expenses. 10% co-insurance incurred in a B2 or C Ward may not be much and can be paid using your CPF Medisave. But if you are hospitalised in the Class A1 or B1 ward, it may be quite a hefty sum to bear. An example would be an elderly patient who has severe skin rashes will need to stay in a cool air-conditioned ward in B1 Ward…
If you have any more questions or doubt, speak to your own Independent FAR or you may email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 90011082. I will be happy to help you understand and make a wise decision to upgrade your MediShield Life plan or not.
To end, I thank God that our government has implemented this new insurance plan for everyone including those with existing chronic illnesses and those who were unable to be insured due to their health problems and financially unable to buy any health insurance plan. With so much financial subsidies and support, I am sure no one will be left untreated medically. Thus our mortality will be increased and we will see the greater impact of an aging population in Singapore in 15 to 30 years time.
Take care and see you soon, one day. Cheers!