Some of you might have heard – our national long term care insurance scheme, ElderShield, will be enhanced and renamed as CareShield Life. This is a good move as Singapore’s population is rapidly aging with shrinking family sizes, hence a declining old-age support ratio.
To be launched in 2020, some of its key points are below:
- CareShield Life will be universal for all future cohorts of Singapore citizens and Permanent Residents, starting from age 30 and including those with pre-existing disability.
- Higher and lifetime payouts, as long as the insured remains severely disabled (i.e. unable to perform 3 out of 6 Activities of Daily Living, also known as ADLs). Payouts start from $600 per month, and will increase overtime as premiums are paid.
- The government will provide premium subsidies and financial support for CareShield Life.
Since the news was announced, here are some FAQs that I have met with and the respective answers:
1. What will happen to existing ElderShield (ESH) policyholders before CareShield Life is launched?
They will continue to be covered and enjoy the benefits under the current ESH policy as long as premiums are paid. No action is required in the meantime. Similarly for policyholders of ESH Supplementary Plans, they will continue to be covered.
2. Will universal coverage be extended to existing ESH policyholders?
Existing ESH policyholders will be given the option to join CareShield Life from 2021, pending further details form the Government.
3. Should I buy the current ESH Supplementary Plans before CareShield Life is launched?
If you have a need for long term care above the current ESH coverage, you should consider enhancing your coverage with ESH Supplementary plans.
Long term care, whether in the form of home care or nursing homes, can incur huge expenses in the long run. Such expenses however, are not covered by the usual hospital & surgical insurance most people have. For more information, I have written a separate article on how to cope with long term care.