FAQs on MediShield Life and Private Integrated Shield Plans

MediShield Life (MSHL) has replaced MediShield as of 1 Nov 2015. Like MediShield, MSHL is targeted at Class B2 and C wards coverage but it provides better protection such as:

  • Higher inpatient/day surgery/outpatient cancer treatment limits
  • Higher annual claim limits
  • No lifetime limit
  • Lower co-insurance payable

This brings several questions for people who are already insured with a Private Integrated Shield Plan (IP). Below are some of the questions I have encountered and my answers to each.

If I have an IP plan and MediShield Life, does that mean I am paying for two policies?

MediShield Life is the foundation on which IP plans are built. There is only one plan and there is no duplication of coverage or payment of premiums. If you have an IP plan, you will pay one single premium directly to your private insurer. The MediShield Life portion will be sorted out at the back-end between your insurer and the CPF Board.

How much can I claim under MSHL and how much under my private IP plan?

You can submit your claim to your private insurer. The part of the claim that MSHL can cover will be provided by the CPF Board to your insurer. Your private insurer will then provide the entire payout to you.

How is my IP premium affected?

The MediShield Life portion of your IP premium has increased from what it used to be under MediShield, but is fully payable by Medisave. The additional private insurance portion of IP premiums is payable by Medisave, up to an Additional Withdrawal Limit.

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Additionally, all 5 IP insurers have committed to not changing the additional private insurance coverage component of premiums for IPs in the first year after the launch of MSHL.

You may be eligible for certain premium subsidies. To understand which subsidies you are entitled to and how they work, there is more information on MOH’s website.

What is the Additional Withdrawal Limit (AWL) for my age group?

Here’s the respective AWLs for each age group:

Age Next Birthday 1 to 40: AWL of $300

Age Next Birthday 41 to 70: AWL of $600

Age Next Birthday 71 and above: AWL of $900

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4 Life Insurance Myths Debunked

Life-Insurance

Do you have a contingency plan that can protect your family just in case something bad happens to you? Assuming you are the main income earner in your family, it will be difficult for your loved ones to pay for school, food and other amenities in the event you pass away. Let’s be honest, it’s a rather scary thought. If you don’t have life insurance ready, you could be leaving your family in serious financial distress. Having life insurance can help support your loved ones.

However, if you’re not familiar with life insurance policies, it can be difficult to distinguish what is true about life insurance and what is a myth. To help clear up confusion, here are some common myths about life insurance.

Life insurance is too expensive

To the uninformed, life insurance can seem costly, but this is one myth that can be debunked. The cost of a life insurance policy varies, as it depends on several factors such as your entry age and medical history. Life insurance costs less than what most people think. Depending on your situation, you can tailor your insurance and lessen your costs drastically. Keep in mind that insurance is cheaper when you’re young, as you get older, premium prices become higher.

If your employer provides coverage, it’s enough

While many companies do provide employees with life and health insurance, this benefit only lasts as long as you are still employed under that company. While you’ll be covered, this coverage is only temporary and the benefit that is put into your insurance policy isn’t much. Furthermore, the policyholder in this case is your employer which means they reserve the right to amend the terms of coverage with their chosen insurer. This leaves you with uncertain coverage.

It’s advisable to separately apply for your personal life insurance plan to ensure that your family will be able to receive additional funding long after you are no longer able to provide for them. Additionally, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your loved ones have a reliable means of obtaining funds in the future.

Life insurance is only for those who have children

If you’re not married and don’t have any children, it’s still important to seriously consider getting life insurance. Keep in mind that you still have dependents—your parents or siblings, for example, could from life insurance, as it can still cover other costs such as funeral expenses, unpaid bills and debts. If you were to unexpectedly pass away without a life insurance plan, your loved ones will be left to pay for these costs. So, even if you’re single, do consider obtaining life insurance as early as possible.

My health condition can exclude me from getting life insurance

Even if you have health conditions you can still have life insurance, although you may need to purchase a policy with lower coverage limits. Essentially, life insurance isn’t restricted to people of a certain age, health or even salary. You can always adjust your policy based on all these factors. There are plenty of insurance options that can suit your needs and budget.

These are just some of the many myths about life insurance which can make it difficult for people to fully understand and appreciate it. This often leads to confusion for some people on whether they need insurance or not. While the idea of having life insurance seems intimidating, doing so will bring plenty of benefits for your loved ones.

4 Financial Essentials for New Parents

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Being part of the Gen Y babies born in the 1980s, in recent years I have found myself often discussing the topic of parenting with my friends who have just become Mums and Dads. Interestingly, quite a handful of them have asked me the same questions: How can I financially plan for my baby? What are policies should I be looking at as a parent now? This article shall touch on these concerns for new parents.

1. Get Health Insurance

According to statistics from the Ministry of Health, the average probability across both genders of a child aged 0-4 being warded is higher than that of the population aged 5-69. It is therefore, never too early to have our newborn well-covered for hospital bills. At the same time, it is equally important for parents, who are the ones bringing the dough home, to have adequate health insurance for themselves.

2. Get Life Insurance

Each parent should also take out a life insurance plan to offer financial stability. Many parents get a life insurance plan on a child as soon as they bring him or her home, but it’s more likely that something will happen to one of the parents. Life insurance will cover the cost of child care if the surviving parent has to work, as well as other expenses related to bringing up the child. The purpose of life insurance is to make sure the surviving spouse can continue to take care of the kids.

3. Create an Education Savings Plan, Don’t Overlook Retirement

A child might not have taken his first steps, but soon he’ll be walking across the graduation stage, so time is of the essence when it comes to saving for tertiary education. However, it is important to balance the need to pay for your child’s education and save for your retirement.

Most new parents are very excited and focused on making sure their kids have great early years that they overlook planning for their own retirement – which is equally, if not more important. There are many financing options to send a kid to university, like taking out loans and scholarships, but there are no loans for retirement.

Because of this, parents need to consider their retirement savings first before putting money aside for their child’s education. It is important to discuss with your spouse how much you want to contribute to your child’s education and weigh that with what they can save for retirement.

4. Plan for the Unexpected

Once the baby is home with the sleeping and eating routine established, parents need to determine and detail an estate plan in case something happens to one or both of them. Parents need to create a will stating who would care for the child in case the unimaginable happens.