The healthcare system in Singapore is world-class and regularly ranks among the best in the world. The government provides high-quality, affordable care to all citizens and resident foreigners, and there is a strong emphasis on preventive medicine. In this article, we’ll cover all about health insurance in Singapore.
The vast majority of healthcare spending in Singapore (about 75%) comes from individuals, either through out-of-pocket payments or private insurance. This reflects the country’s “user pays” approach to healthcare financing, where individuals are primarily responsible for their own health expenses. The government also operates a number of social assistance programs to help those who cannot afford medical care.
There are four main governmental agencies that oversee healthcare in Singapore: the Ministry of Health (MOH), the integrated Health Information System (IHIS), the Hospital Authority (HA) and Singapore Health Services (HS). MOH sets health policy, while IHIS manages patient medical records, e-health initiatives and health analytics. HA runs public hospitals and supports other medical institutions like eldercare centres, while HS provides primary care through a network of neighbourhood polyclinics.
The government health insurance system in Singapore is threefold: Medisave, Medishield and Private Insurance.
Medisave is a savings account where members can set aside a portion of their income to pay for future medical expenses. The money in the account earns interest and can be used to pay for hospitalization, outpatient treatment, certain cancer treatments and home nursing care.
Medishield is a basic health insurance plan in Singapore. It helps to pay for some of your medical bills in the event that you are hospitalised, and it also provides outpatient coverage.
The government has made enhancements to Medishield over the years, and the latest version is known as MediShield Life. MediShield Life provides lifelong coverage, and it is now compulsory for all Singaporeans. This means that everyone must have basic health insurance, and those who do not have private health insurance can join MediShield Life.
Medisave is a national medical savings system in Singapore. It was introduced in 1984 to help individuals save for future healthcare needs.
Contributions to Medisave are made by both employees and employers, and the funds can be used to pay for a wide range of healthcare services, including hospitalization, outpatient care, and specified dental and optical procedures. The amount saved in Medisave can also be used to offset the cost of premiums for private integrated shield plans.
The cost of healthcare in Singapore depends on the treatment that is required. For example, a consultation with a doctor may cost around S$80, while an operation could cost tens of thousands of dollars. For example, a public hospital may charge for a brain stroke between S$ 1490-2500 and at the same time, a private hospital will charge around S$6000.
Generally, the quality of healthcare in Singapore is considered to be high, and the country ranks well in international comparisons. This is partly due to the fact that the government invests heavily in the health sector, and subsidies are available for those who cannot afford to pay for healthcare services.
There are three types of health insurance in Singapore: MediShield Life, Integrated Shield Plans (IPs), and Private Healthcare Insurance.
MediShield Life is a basic health insurance plan that all Singapore citizens and permanent residents are enrolled in. It helps to pay for large hospital bills and is offered to everyone, regardless of age or pre-existing conditions.
Integrated Shield Plans (IPs) are optional plans that you can purchase on top of your MediShield Life policy. They offer additional benefits, such as being able to choose your own doctor and hospital and cover a wider range of treatments.
There are many benefits to having health insurance in Singapore. For one, it can help you cover the costs of unexpected medical bills. It can also give you peace of mind knowing that you have a safety net in place in case of an accident or illness.
Additionally, health insurance can provide coverage for routine checkups and preventive care, which can help you maintain your health and avoid more costly treatments down the road. Ultimately, having health insurance is an important way to protect yourself and your family from financial hardship in the event of a health crisis.
That’s it in a nutshell! Health insurance is compulsory for all residents of Singapore, and the government heavily subsidizes premiums to make them affordable. As long as you have a policy and pay your premiums, you will be covered for most hospitalization expenses.
Of course, there are a few things that health insurance doesn’t cover (like dental care), so it’s important to read the fine print of your policy or talk to an agent if you have any questions. Thanks for following along – we hope this gives you a better understanding of how health insurance works in Singapore. Thank you for reading our article on health insurance in Singapore.