5 Important things that you need to know about the Integrated Shield Plan changes
The whole Singapore online community went abuzz when it was announced on 7th March 2018 about the new Integrated Shield Plan. The changes were introduced amidst concerns that the zero copayment feature of full riders were resulting in ‘over-consumption, over-servicing and over-charging of health care services’. In case you’re new to health insurance, these ‘full-riders’ are optional add-ons to the MediShield Life we are all mandated to have.
So, what do these changes mean to consumers like you and I?
1. You will not be affected if you have an existing IP with full rider:
If you are part of the 1.1 million people who already have full riders prior to 8th March 2018, you will not be affected. This is because the insurance companies must honour their contractual obligations. As Senior Minister of State for Health Chee Tong Tat said: “We recognise that existing rider policies are commercial contracts between insurers and their policy holders.”
It is advisable that you do not switch policies or insurers out of fear or misinformation.
2. You will not be affected if your Integrated Shield Plans already have co-payment features:
The requirements for new riders will not affect MediShield Life and Integrated Shield Plans which already have co-payment features. The changes will only apply to full rider IP plans.
3. You will have to switch to the Co-Payment Rider if you purchase a full rider plan after 8th March 2018:
No full riders can be sold after 1st April 2019. If you have not bought any full riders prior to 8th March 2018, but plan to buy one now, you must switch to the new scheme by 1st April 2021 at the latest. This period is to give time to insurers to come up with new riders that include co-payment and cap.
You can choose to switch to the new riders earlier, and any pre-existing conditions that are covered prior to the switch will not be excluded. One benefit of switching to the new riders earlier is that you will pay lower premiums!
4. The 5% co-payment has a maximum cap:
Once the new riders are ruled out by the insurers, the co-payment is 5%, but with a cap of S$3,000. Do note however, that the S$3,000 cap only applies if the patient is treated by doctors on the insurer’s approved panel, or had received prior approval from the insurer. Therefore, do make sure the doctor is approved before engaging their professional services.
5. The 5% co-payment can be paid by Medisave:
9 in 10 inpatient bills would have a co-payment of $550 or less for public hospitals, while the co-payment for 9 in 10 inpatient bills would be $1,270 or less. This 5% co-payment can be covered within the current Medisave withdrawal limits for 99% of all inpatient bills.
Get yourself covered with AVIVA MyShield or AXA Shield , which both have a policy year limit up of to $1,000,000 for hospital treatment (including pre and post treatment). At PolicyPal, we work hard to make insurance easy for everyone, so do reach out if you need help on any insurance matters. 🙂