SINGAPORE: The Ministry of Health (MOH) is reviewing how MediShield Life can be expanded to cover inpatient treatments for serious pregnancy and delivery complications, Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said on Monday (Oct 1).
Mr Gan said this in a written response to a parliamentary question from MP Christopher de Souza, who had asked if the minister would consider extending additional financial support to couples who experience pregnancy complications and require inpatient and outpatient healthcare and mental wellness support.
Mr de Souza had also asked if the minister would consider giving extra financial support to expectant mothers who face difficulties obtaining maternity insurance from private insurers due to previous pregnancy complications.
“MOH recognises that some serious pregnancy complications could result in large bills,” Mr Gan said.
“MOH is currently reviewing how MediShield Life can help to cover inpatient treatments for serious pregnancy and delivery complications. We will provide details when ready,” he added.
Under the current terms of MediShield Life, maternity charges (including caesarean operations) or abortions are excluded from coverage.
That said, all Singaporeans – including expectant mothers – receive up to 80 per cent subsidy for inpatient treatments in public hospitals, and up to 70 per cent subsidy for subsidised treatments at specialist outpatient clinics, Mr Gan said.
Over the past three years, about eight in 10 pregnant women who received inpatient treatment for a pregnancy or delivery complication in B2/C wards paid less than S$500 out of pocket, following subsidies and Medisave, Mr Gan added.
“Couples who face financial difficulties with their medical bills may approach medical social workers at our public hospitals for assistance, including tapping on Medifund,” Mr Gan said.