The basic healthcare insurance forms the foundation for our medical coverage in Singapore. As much as Singapore is known to adopt the best of medical practices from around the globe, medical and long term care costings has been increasing till today.
Given that most Singaporeans and PRs/foreigners would have got covered for our Medishield Life with the integrated shield plans for hospitalization today which is meant for short term coverage. There is also a need to look at the Long term basic healthcare aspect like Careshield Life.(previously called Eldershield). The reason is because, Medishield life/the private Integrated shield plans only take care of your hospital bills when you get admitted to hospital (Short term coverage). However, Careshield or Eldershield and its supplement(upgrade) will take care of your long term monthly expenses when you are out of the hospital.
Down here, I wish to clarify that most people has some misconceptions and would think that with Medishield life/the private Integrated Shield plan, it would mean that having the Careshieldor Eldershield schemes would be
1) Un- claimable or not able to claim for both healthcare insurance
2) Careshield or Eldershield would be ‘extra’ or redundant
However, this is not true.
Note that both schemes are also claimable concurrently. And that that Medishield and Careshield both serves different purposes and needs for everyone. It would be better that you speak to healthcare specialist like us to advise you whether your financial needs are capable of having both insurance(meaning to upgrade to get better coverage) or just having the basic healthcare by the government will do.
ElderShield is an insurance scheme for severe disability. This provides the financial protection to those needing care and looking after on a long term basis, more so in the old age. In case of disability which is severe, the policy holder receives a cash payout on monthly basis for a specific period of time which is determined by the type of plan.
It has been announced officially that the CareShield plan will replace the existing ElderShield Plan and come into effect in 2020, for all the Permanent residents and the Singaporeans. For those who are not under the Plan of ElderShield, the CareShield plan is a ‘must’.
What is CareShield life:
CareShield life is insurance for long-term care which can provide the required financial protection for care on a long term basis. CareShield life provides better assurance and protection for your needs.
In case you are Permanent Resident or a Singaporean born in 1980 or later you tend to join the scheme automatically from 2020 or when you reach the age of 30. This is done even if you have pre-existing disabilities or any conditions.
In case you are a Permanent resident or a Singaporean born earlier than or in 1979, you have the option of choosing the CareShield life only if you wish. You are free to join this CareShield Life in 2021 only if there is no severe disability.
In case you are born anytime between the year 1970 and 1979 and have the ElderShield 400 and do not suffer from any major disability, you tend to get enrolled into CareShield Life automatically. You have the choice of opting out of this CareShield Life by 2023 December 31 in case you get enrolled automatically. You are also refunded with the premiums in case you decide not to join this insurance scheme.
CareShield Life in short:
*Payouts for lifetime in case there is severe disability.
*CareShield life is from the age of 30, as compare to ElderShield, which starts off from the age of 40.
*With the passing of time, the payout increases. This is $600 every month from the year 2020. You need to be aware that after the first claim is made, the payouts stop the increase.
*CareShield Life Premiums, like the ElderShield Life premiums, can be made using Medisave.
Latest Announcements of CareShield Life:
#1 the members of ElderShield can join CareShield from 2021:
Those with membership of ElderShield can join Care Shield from 2021. This is in reference to those born either in 1979 or even earlier. For these members it is important to take into considerations the factors listed below.
*Even if you are not insured at present you can join CareShield. There is no maximum limit to the age for joining.
*You must not have any severe disability.
*The ElderShield members between the age of 41 years and 50 years and those who do not suffer from any disability considered ‘severe’ will be auto-enrolled in the year 2021. You have the choice of opting out of this CareShield if you so wish but this needs to be done within 2 years.
#2 Payable Premiums:
The latest announcement for the CareShield Premiums for those members who are 40 years of age in the year 2020 will be $360 for females and $300 for males. For those who are 30 years of age in the year 2020, the premiums work out $252 for females and $204 for males.
The premium to be paid by those who already have the ElderShield membership and wish to join the CareShield in 2021 is different.
The existing cohort who has been on the ESH400 will pay a premium which is annually based. The past premiums will be taken into account. The payable premiums are similar to the new members of Care Shield, which is till the age of 67.
Those who are not under the ElderShield or those who are under EHS300 will need to pay an additional component of catch-up in the premiums, besides the base premium. This is due to the fact that fewer premiums have been paid in the earlier years.
At present, The MOH has not announced the exact amount of the payable premiums.
#3 Inclusive underwriting:
The administration of CareShield Life will be in the hands of the Singapore government. The ElderShield was administered by the insurers on the private basis. It has been declared by the MOH that the Care Shield underwriting process will be more inclusive. As compared to the private insurers the underwriting criterions of CareShield life is definitely considered more lenient as everyone can join this in 2021 as long as they are not suffering from severe disability.
#4 Available Premium Support:
For those who are already on the ElderShield ‘participating incentives’ are offered. The amount will be dependent on the age of the individual.
#5 Any Supplement of ElderShield bought is relevant:
The new plan of CareShield Life will not supersede the coverage of the existing Elder Shield supplement plans bought from any private insurer. In case you do not wish to switch to Care Shield plan of 2021 the Elder Shield plan supplement is relevant. You can continue enjoying the coverage with the payment of the premiums.
#6 Elder Funds:
Elder Fund, which is an ‘assistance’ scheme, will be available to those Singaporeans of a lower income and who are 30 years of age or above. This is applicable to those who are disabled severely and need additional support for the long-term care cost.
This scheme will offer around $250 payout on a monthly basis and is for those who are unable to join CareShield life. This is also offered to those who have low balances of Medisave and not sufficient savings for the long term care.
#7 Withdrawals from Medisave for Care on Long-term:
From the year 2020 onwards those Singaporeans who are disabled severely (those who are claiming from ElderShield or CareShield) can make withdrawals of cash from the Medisave account or from the account of the spouse who has Medisave.
This initiative is to help the Singaporeans to use the savings of the Medisave to supplement their needs for long-term care.
MOH and CareShield Life:
The ElderShield scheme will be administered by the MOH on a basis of ‘not-for-profit’. In case the claims experience works out better than the expectations, there will be rebates on premiums for the policy holders of ElderShield. At present NTUC Income, Great Eastern Life Assurance and Aviva are the private insurers serving the policyholders of Elder Shield.
The transfer terms and valuation are in step to the standards of the industry.
The first cohorts who will be enrolled are the permanent residents and citizens aged between 30 years and 40 years in the year 2020. The subsequent cohorts will automatically join once they reach the age of 30.