Private hospitals typically promise fast, high-quality treatment in a comfortable setting. But with rising healthcare costs becoming a concern not just in Singapore but globally as well, private healthcare may appear to be out of reach for an increasing number of Singaporeans.
The good news is, for Singaporeans and Permanent Residents who have an Integrated Shield Plan (ISP), private healthcare can still be a viable option. Here, we address some common misconceptions about the cost and attainability of private healthcare in Singapore.
MYTH 1: PRIVATE HOSPITAL TREATMENT IS ALWAYS COSTLY
Fact: With the right ISP and full rider, your bill upon discharge can be S$0, which includes pre- and post-treatment, as well as follow-up care.
ISPs cover your hospital bill, but do not include the 10-per-cent co-insurance and deductible portions. These can be covered by buying a full private hospital rider. With the private hospital ISP and a matching full rider, patients don’t have to pay any cash when they are admitted into private hospitals like Gleneagles Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Hospital, Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital and Parkway East Hospital.
If you have to visit the accident and emergency department, your bill can also be covered if your condition requires you to be admitted for a minimum of eight hours.
MYTH 2: PRIVATE HOSPITAL FEES ARE NOT FIXED
Fact: Many private hospitals offer fixed-fee packages. These are available not only to Singaporeans and Permanent Residents, but also to foreigners and corporate insurance or ISP holders.
For instance, Mount Elizabeth Novena offers a cataract surgery bundle of S$5,283, which includes doctor’s fees. With Medisave paying up to S$2,450 and the ISP and rider paying for the remainder, patients will not have to pay any additional charges when they are discharged.
MYTH 3: ONLY MEDISHIELD LIFE CAN OFFSET MY HOSPITAL BILL
Fact: Singaporeans and Permanent Residents who want more treatment and care options can top up their MediShield Life coverage with an ISP and full rider.
This would make it possible to pay S$0 for medical treatment, especially at private hospitals that offer cashless service. Patients who are eligible for this service do not have to pay anything when they are admitted or discharged.
MYTH 4: ALL ISPs ARE THE SAME
Fact: There are essentially three types of ISPs:
- The lowest-cost ISPs cover up to Class B public hospital wards
- The next tier covers up to Class A public hospital wards
- The top tier covers up to private hospitals
An ISP covers your hospital bill, except the co-insurance and deductible. A full rider covers the co-insurance and deductible components.
MYTH 5: NEW RIDER GUIDELINES AFFECT ALL POLICYHOLDERS
Fact: The Ministry of Health announced new guidelines in March regarding the sale of riders. If you bought your full rider before March 8, 2018, your coverage is not affected. Together with an ISP covering private hospitals, you can still be fully covered for treatment.
If you bought a full rider after March 8, you will still enjoy full coverage on co-insurance and deductible components till April 1, 2021. After that, the 5-per-cent co-payment applies.
Full riders will no longer be sold from April 1, 2019.
Disclaimer: The material included in this advertorial is of a general nature. It is intended for education and informational purposes only. You are strongly advised to seek the professional advice of insurance professionals before making any decision on any of the medical insurance schemes.