The Economist Intelligence Unit declared Singapore the most expensive city to live in. Interestingly, the city-state was taking the number one rank for the fifth time in a row. This implies that once you decide to have a family, there are health insurance changes you must make.
It is important to note that personal health insurance is mandatory for Singapore citizens and Permanent Residents. In particular, the government has a comprehensive program in place that provides cover.
The program is MediShield Life insurance which provides basic care. Policyholders can upgrade their MediShield life insurance by purchasing Integrated Shield Plan (IP) from private insurers.
However, the program mainly focuses on the individual. Therefore, once you decide to have a family, one has to make specific changes to the insurance plan.
Adopting a Single-Family Insurance Plan
Starting a family basically means that man and woman begins to live under one roof. Therefore, the couple might as well want to be under a single health insurance cover. This is especially crucial in the case where both partners had their own coverage plans before marrying.
Fortunately, it is easy to adopt a single coverage under the family health insurance plan. For instance, there is the Aviva MyShield Integrated Shield Plan. Basically, this plan complements the MediShield Life for more protection.
Aviva MyShield Integrated Shield Plan includes cover for babies up to 6 months old. The premium for this coverage is up to S$50,000. Further, there is the AXA Family Advantage cover. Basically, the plan offers a choice for the partners to save for emergencies.
Additionally, the plan covers complications during pregnancy. If the pregnancy carries to term, the plan incorporates coverage for newborn babies.
Additional Insurance Schemes
In Singapore, the government has a different insurance plan for newborn babies. In particular, new parents naturally join the Baby Bonus Scheme, which assists in taking care of baby-related expenses. Interestingly, the Baby Bonus scheme is still a government initiative that seeks to encourage motherhood.
In particular, members of the scheme can access various government subsidies, including cash gifts. Further, the scheme facilitates the opening of a Child Development Account (CDA). With the account, parents can access government grants that aid the raising of the baby.
Furthermore, the CDA account is essential in that parents can use it to save money for the kid’s school tuition. Interestingly, the government offers to match the savings as part of a grant scheme.
Here, the couples might also add a disability income insurance plan. In essence, this plan replaces the lost income during the time that the mother cannot work. Usually, this plan is popular among spouses whose salaries are crucial to the family. Typically, the plan pays out a fixed amount of the monthly wage but which is less than the original compensation.
Purchasing Cheaper Insurance Plans
As we’ve mentioned, life in Singapore can be quite expensive. Therefore, taking on family life adds to the burden. This is to say that there is a tighter financial strain on the family even when both parents are working.
Basically, the addition of a new family member reduces the per capita income of the family. This is because per capita income (PCI) is a quotient of total family income and the number of dependants.
Therefore, if you had an expensive health insurance plan, you will have to find cheaper options. For instance, let us assume that you held a MediShield life policy plus an additional IP from a private insurer. Further, considering the new co-payment structures, the IP policy becomes quite untenable. Therefore, you will find circumstances forcing you to revert to the basic MediShield life policy.