Sunday, December 20, 2015

Healthcare, we can all afford

Being hospitalised is no fun and having to worry about that hospital bill, no matter big or small, can make it worse. Fortunately Singaporeans enjoy heavy subsidies in public hospitals, especially in class B2 and C wards.

This means that a huge part of your hospital bill is taken care of when you are admitted into hospital. You just need to bear part of the medical expenses and pay more if you opt for a higher class ward.

Overall, direct subsidies to patients have increased, from about $850 million in 2001 to more than $1.6billion in 2007. And this is projected to exceed $2.2 billion by 2012.

Singaporeans can be proud of our healthcare system which is rated among the best in the world. We have a comprehensive system – with government subsidies, supplemented with the 3Ms – that makes sure everyone can manage the financial burdens of hospitalisation.

a. Medisave
This compulsory medical savings plan lets you pay for either your own personal or immediate family members’ hospitalisation expenses. On average, each Singaporean has enough in his or her Medisave account to cover about 11 class B2 or 12 class C hospitalisation episodes. These savings help to significantly lighten our hospital bills.

More than 80 per cent of Singaporeans use Medisave to pay for their hospitalisation expenses. Medisave usage has also been progressively extended to meet outpatient needs.

b. MediShield
MediShield is a low-cost medical insurance plan that helps patients cope with large bills and covers up to 80 per cent for class B2 and C bills. If you are in the middle income group and prefer class A or B1 or private wards, you should consider buying supplementary Medisave-approved insurance plans for additional benefits, in addition to basic MediShield.

Currently, about 75 per cent of Singaporeans are covered under MediShield and other types of Medisave-approved insurance plans.

C. Medifund
Medifund works like a financial safety net to help Singaporeans in genuine need. Those who still face difficulties with hospital expenses, even after government subsidies, Medisave and MediShield, can approach a medical social worker at public hospitals to help them apply for Medifund.

We must all play our part

We must never take good health for granted, and should all play an active part to keep healthcare affordable. Therefore we should live a healthy lifestyle, contribute to Medisave and buy adequate and appropriate healthcare insurance.

Lower income Singaporeans should have basic MediShield which covers class B2 and C wards. The better-off who can afford the higher ward classes should buy Medisave-approved Private Integrated Plans on top of their basic MediShield to cover their stays in class A or B1 wards or at private hospitals.

For more information, do whatsapp me at +65 9151 9924 for a free consultation today.