Best Health Insurance 2018

Singapore's healthcare landscape is rapidly changing. To help you find adequate protection and stay within your budget, we've rounded up the best health insurance plans available in Singapore.

Table of Contents

Cheapest Health Insurance: NTUC IncomeShield Enhanced C

NTUCEnhanced IncomeShield Enhanced C

Consider this if you are a healthy individual looking for a bit more than what MediShield Life offers

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Public B2 Ward

The cheapest ISP health insurance is NTUC IncomeShield's Enhanced C plan and could be a good fit for very healthy individuals who want a little extra coverage for major illnesses without wanting hospitalisation at higher wards. Its premiums cost 75% below average regardless of age, while it provides a S$150,000 of annual protection that fully covers outpatient cancer treatment, inpatient room & board, surgery and emergency overseas treatment are fully covered. Additionally, you'll receive S$5,000 of inpatient psychiatric treatment per year, a S$1,500 final expense benefit and a S$3,000 prosthesis benefit. However, certain benefits such as pregnancy complications, congenital abnormalities and organ donation are covered up to MediShield life benefits only and you can only stay at B2 Wards and below.

If you want to top up your coverage, NTUC has several riders to choose from. The cheapest option is the Daily Cash rider, which will give you a S$50/day hospital cash benefit and a S$100 get well benefit. The total price of the rider and base plan comes out to be 85% below the market average for an ISP base plan and rider package. On the other hand, if you want full coverage for your deductible and co-insurance, you can opt for the Plus Rider— the most expensive NTUC's rider packages, but still costing 65% less compared to other ISP-Rider combinations. Read our full review.

BenefitBenefit Limit (Class B2)MediShield Life
Annual LimitS$150,000S$100,000
Room & BoardAs ChargedS$700 per day
Pre-Hospitalisation BenefitsAs ChargedN/A
Post-Hospitalisation BenefitsAs ChargedN/A
Cancer ChemotherapyS$3,000/monthAs Charged
Pregnancy ComplicationsCovered Up to Medishield Life Benefits OnlyCovered under Inpatient Treatment
Psychiatric BenefitS$5,000S$3,500

Cheapest Integrated Shield Standard Plan for Class B1 Wards: Great Eastern SupremeHealth Standard

Great EasternSupremeHealth Standard Plan

Consider this if you are looking for the cheapest Standard plan

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Public B1 Ward and below

The cheapest Standard plan is Great Eastern's SupremeHealth Standard. It costs around 25% less than other Standard plans and 70% below the ISP industry average. Its coverage includes S$1,700 daily normal ward coverage, S$590-S$16,720 of surgery coverage, S$9,800 surgical implants coverage and accidental dental and examination and lab tests coverage. Standard plans are mainly recommended for healthy individuals with no pre-existing conditions who want to add a little extra to their MediShield policy and stay at Class B1 wards.

This graph shows the cost of Standard ISP plans in Singapore

If you have a little bit of wiggle room in your budget, you can add Great Eastern's Silver Rider to your Standard plan and get S$1,000 of emergency outpatient coverage, S$3,000 home visits benefit, S$18,000 hospice care coverage, S$1,500 mobility aid coverage, S$50 hospitalisation cash benefit and a S$500 get well benefit. The total package cost comes out to around 55% below average compared to other Base plan and Rider packages, making it one of the more affordable ISP and Rider packages. Read our full review.

BenefitBenefit Limit (Class B1)MediShield Life
Annual LimitS$150,000S$100,000
Room & BoardS$1,700/dayS$700/day
Pre-Hospitalisation BenefitsAs ChargedN/A
Post-Hospitalisation BenefitsAs ChargedN/A
Cancer ChemotherapyS$5,200/monthAs Charged
Pregnancy ComplicationsN/ACovered under Inpatient Treatment
Psychiatric BenefitS$17,500S$3,500

Best Health Insurance for Families: Aviva MyShield

Consider this if you want comprehensive family-friendly protection

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Public Ward A and below

If you are looking to protect family members of all ages, you can consider Aviva's MyShield Plan 1 or 2 with Rider Option A. The combination of the plan and rider costs around 50% below average compared to other ISP and Rider packages. Additionally, Aviva's MyShield offers unique family-oriented coverage including a S$50,000 benefit for newborns, a specialists priority service with a 3 working day appointment time and planned or emergency overseas treatment coverage. Not only that, it is the only plan offering coverage for preventive cancer surgery and S$150,000 of extra inpatient benefits for the 5 critical illnesses (heart attack, major cancer, stroke and end stage lung and liver disease).

Lastly, Rider Option A is free for children under 20, provided both of the parents are insured under Plan 1 or 2 with a Plan 1 or 2 Rider Option A or C. However, you should note that if you opt to buy Plan 2 for your child to receive the complimentary Rider, you will suffer a 50% pro-ration factor if you put her into a private hospital. This means you will be responsible for 50% of the expenses incurred in addition to the co-insurance and deductible. Therefore, we recommend insuring your child under Plan 1 if you want all of your family members to stay in private hospitals. Read our full review.

BenefitsBenefit LimitWard A Avg.
Annual LimitS$600,000S$528,571
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsAs ChargedAs Charged
Pre-Hospitalisation (Days)90120
Post-Hospitalisation (Days)90180
Outpatient Cancer TreatmentAs ChargedAs Charged
Pregnancy & Childbirth ComplicationsAs ChargedAs Charged
Psychiatric Treatment (Inpatient)S$17,500S$8,286

Best Value Health Insurance: Prudential PruShield Plus

PrudentialPruShield A Plus Public

Consider this if you are an average consumer

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Public Ward A and below

The best health insurance for the average value-seeking consumer is Prudential's PruShield Plus. First, its premiums are around 15-20% lower than average for all ages, despite a higher than average annual limit of S$600,000 compared to other Ward A plans in the market. Its 365 post-hospitalisation coverage is also one of the longest on the market. Additionally, you can purchase Prudential's PruExtra Plus Rider, which includes S$125 daily hospitalisation cash benefit, S$150 ambulance coverage and S$2,000 of special appliances and prosthesis coverage. Combined with the Plus plan, the total cost comes out around 25% below average for base plan and Rider packages.

This graph shows the annual premiums for ISP health insurance for a 45 year old non-smoker staying in Ward A and lower

In terms of its specific coverage benefits, cancer treatment, dialysis, pregnancy complications, surgery, and room and board expenses are covered on an "as charged" basis, meaning they will be paid in the full amount (subject to limits, deductibles and co-insurance). On top of this, you will also receive a final expense provision benefit of S$3,000 and be covered for hyperbaric oxygen therapy (for treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning, severe anemia and other blood-oxygen related maladies). However, Prudential's PruShield Plus does lack comprehensive coverage for severe psychological disorders and critical illnesses, which are better covered by Great Eastern or Aviva. Read our full review.

BenefitsBenefit LimitWard A Avg.
Annual LimitS$600,000S$528,571
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsAs ChargedAs Charged
Pre-Hospitalisation (Days)180120
Post-Hospitalisation (Days)365180
Outpatient Cancer TreatmentAs ChargedAs Charged
Pregnancy & Childbirth ComplicationsAs ChargedAs Charged
Total Psychiatric TreatmentS$3,500S$8,286

Best Health Insurance for Serious Illnesses & Seniors: Great Eastern A Plus

Great EasternSupremeHealth A Plus

Consider this if you are a senior or want long-term recovery coverage

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Public Ward A and below

If you are looking for a high value plan focused on serious illness treatment and post-hospitalisation recovery, Great Eastern's A Plus plan can be a good fit. First, Great Eastern's A Plus plan will give you the most medical coverage per dollar of premium: its premiums are 30% below average while boasting a S$1,000,000 annual limit and above average psychiatric, final expense and post-hospitalisation benefits (including speech and occupational therapy). Due to these protections, it is an especially good choice for those who want extensive coverage for psychiatric issues or for accidents and illnesses that may require occupational therapy for full recovery (such as rheumatoid arthritis or stroke) .

Great Eastern's riders are also some of the most comprehensive. They include up to S$27,000 of hospice care, S$5,000 for home health care (for eligible expenses incurred post-hospitalisation), a get well benefit of S$500 and S$6,000 alternative treatment coverage for Chinese medicine (post-hospitalisation). Premiums for these riders are fairly reasonable, with the Platinum Select rider costing around the market average and the Gold rider costing 30% below average for ages 65 and over. Due to this, adding a rider can create a high-value package for seniors who want affordable protection for long term illnesses and care after they have left the hospital. Read our full review.

BenefitsBenefit LimitWard A Avg.
Annual LimitS$1,000,000S$528,571
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsAs ChargedAs Charged
Pre-Hospitalisation (Days)120120
Post-Hospitalisation (Days)180180
Outpatient Cancer TreatmentAs ChargedAs Charged
Pregnancy & Childbirth ComplicationsAs ChargedAs Charged
Total Psychiatric TreatmentS$20,000S$8,826

Best Health Insurance for Private Hospitals: Great Eastern SupremeHealth P Plus

Great EasternSupremeHealth P Plus

Consider this if you want comprehensive coverage at Private Hospitals

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Private

If you are looking to receive maximum private hospital coverage regardless of cost, you can consider Great Eastern's P Plus plan along with its Great Eastern Platinum Rider. The P Plus plan offers the highest annual limit for private hospitals of S$1,500,000, and provides full medical bill coverage for cancer treatment, dialysis, pre and post-hospitalisation treatment. You will also receive the highest psychiatric, speech and occupational therapy benefits currently offered, as well as a combined S$20,000 of coverage for congenital abnormalities for your child. This is all for a cost that is 15% cheaper compared to other Private Hospital plans.

To top off your coverage to the maximum, you can purchase the Platinum Select Rider to receive a private hospital cash benefit of S$125, a get-well benefit of S$500, S$300 of hospice care benefits per day for 90 days, S$250 of ambulance coverage and S$2,000 of accidental outpatient treatment. Lastly, Great Eastern can save you thousands of dollars if you choose to get care at a Private hospital for certain ailments because its pro-ration factor for getting care above your ward level is 70% instead of the 50% implemented by other insurers.This means Great Eastern will pay 70% of the incurred cost rather than only 50% if you choose to get care at a Ward above your level. Read our full review.

BenefitsBenefit LimitPrivate Hospital Avg.
Annual LimitS$1,500,000S$1,050,000
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsAs ChargedAs Charged
Pre-Hospitalisation (Days)120150
Post-Hospitalisation (Days)180173
Outpatient Cancer TreatmentAs ChargedAs Charged
Pregnancy & Childbirth ComplicationsAs ChargedAs Charged
Total Psychiatric TreatmentS$25,000S$10,583

Maximum Public Hospital Coverage: AIA HealthShield Gold Max A

AIAHealthShield Gold Max A

Consider this if you want high levels of protection at Class A Wards

Co-Insurance 10%
Hospital Type Private

The best plan for maximum public hospital coverage is AIA HealthShield Gold Max A. While it is a Private hospital plan, you will benefit most from it if you utilise its benefits for Ward A or lower. For example, its benefits include an industry beating annual limit of S$2,000,000 for public hospital treatment, the longest pre-and post hospitalisation coverage of 395 days, fully covered benefits for congenital abnormalities, S$10,000 of prosthesis benefits, S$100,000 extra cover for 30 critical illnesses per year (and unlimited per lifetime), S$5,000 for post-hospitalisation home nursing benefit and S$5,000 of post-hospitalisation alternative medicine benefit for cancer or stroke.

To top off your coverage even more, you can opt for AIA's A Saver Plan A Rider, which will reimburse you in full for a standard bed to keep your hospitalised child company, a S$50/day hospitalisation benefit rider, S$5,000 of post-hospitalisation alternative treatment and S$5,000 of post-hospitalisation nursing coverage. However, premiums for AIA tend to be costly, meaning this plan will mainly fit affluent customers who are focused on maxing out coverage for Ward A expenses. Additionally, using this plan as a Private Hospital plan will result in lackluster benefits, as its annual limit drops to S$600,000 and your pre and post-hospitalisation care coverage drops to 100 days. Read our full review.

BenefitsBenefit LimitPrivate Hospital Avg.
Annual LimitS$2,000,000 (for Ward A & lower)S$1,050,000
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsAs ChargedAs Charged
Pre-Hospitalisation (Days)395 (for Public)150
Post-Hospitalisation (Days)395 (for Public)173
Outpatient Cancer TreatmentAs ChargedAs Charged
Pregnancy & Childbirth ComplicationsAs ChargedAs Charged
Total Psychiatric TreatmentS$10,000S$10,583

Best International Health Insurance: FWD 2m & 3m

Consider this if you are an international citizen who wants high value health insurance for a market beating price

Optional Deductible S$0-S$10,000
Hospitalisation Accommodation Public Shared/Standard Single

Singaporeans who frequently travel for work abroad and foreigners looking for more comprehensive health coverage in Singapore can consider an international health insurance plan as a viable alternative to an Integrated Shield Plan. FWD's International Health Insurance provides great comprehensive coverage in exchange for very affordable premiums. Plans cost around 70% below the average for international health insurance plans, ranging between S$900-S$1,100 for a 45-year old. When these premiums combine with FWD's S$2,000,000-S$3,000,000 limit plans, you will end up with one of the highest value international plans available. In terms of benefits, it provides 100% coverage for some of the most life-threatening procedures including cancer treatment, organ transplants and pregnancy complications anywhere within your region of coverage. Furthermore, FWD is a great option for health conscious individuals as they will double your annual limit if you don't make any hospitalisation claims for two years. Read our full review

BenefitsBenefit LimitIndustry Avg.
Annual LimitS$2,000,000S$1,959,750
Hospitalisation & Surgical BenefitsPaid in FullPaid in Full
Pre-Hospitalisation Coverage (Days)90110
Post-Hospitalisation Coverage (Days)90110
Cancer TreatmentPaid in FullPaid In Full
Medical EvacuationS$1,000,000S$1,984,643
Emergency DentalPaid in FullPaid in Full
Promotion: 20% off with "BestHealth"

How to Pick the Best Health Insurance Plan

Choosing the best health insurance plan for you depends on your budget, prior health conditions and potential future conditions.

First, you should only consider plans you can afford not just now, but also in the future. Health insurance premiums are bound to go up over time due to continually rising healthcare costs and your age. For instance, premiums can increase as much as by 15 times from the age of 25 to age of 75. Also, while everyone wants ultimate comfort when they are hospitalised, not everyone can afford Private Hospital plans.

However, this doesn't mean you should settle on the cheapest plan. Cheaper plans (such as Integrated Standard Plans) may not offer comprehensive enough coverage for families or for those who are predispositioned for certain illnesses. To find the sweet spot, you should look at what you can afford now and err on the side of caution when calculating your future medical expense budget.

Next, you should take into consideration your current health status. For instance, it may be a lot harder for you to find an ISP plan if you suffer from a pre-existing condition. You should also look at what benefits you may need in the future due to your current health conditions. If you are at risk for diabetes, your worst case scenario is that you may need coverage for a kidney dialysis machine down the line; if you are an expectant mother, you may need future coverage for congenital abnormalities or pregnancy complications. Remaining realistic about your current and future needs is the best way for you to find a plan that will provide full coverage without sacrificing too much of your budget.

Lastly, you should always read the terms and conditions of your policy. For some benefits (such as congenital abnormalities or pregnancy complications), there is a waiting period before the benefits become effective. Policies also have exclusions that may not be evident just by reading the benefits table. This can include exclusions of certain critical illnesses, pre-existing conditions, injuries due to certain events (such as war or substance abuse). If you have questions about your policy document, you should reach out to your insurer to make sure you know exactly what will be covered to avoid paying out of pocket for costly medical bills.

Methodology

To get to our top health insurance picks, we gathered benefits and pricing data from the 6 insurers who offered Integrated Shield Plans for a profile of a healthy, non-smoking male in age groups 25 to 75. We did this in order to get the most accurate picture of which plans offered the most coverage per dollar of premium and how each plan is priced in comparison to the others. Our premiums did not include MediShield Life or Additional Withdrawal Limits for fairer comparison of premiums and benefits and because individual Medisave accounts may vary.

Insurance Companies In Sample
AIAAvivaAXA
NTUC IncomeGreat EasternPrudential

Because consumers have unique health backgrounds and may prioritise some types of coverage over others, we also used qualitative analysis to evaluate how plans and their riders differed and what unique and helpful benefits each insurer offered. We did not put much emphasis on the current Rider's deductible and co-insurance coverage due to new regulations surrounding a mandatory minimum 5% co-payment for health insurance claims that will make these benefits obsolete in the near future.

Anastassia Evlanova

Anastassia is a Junior Research Analyst at ValueChampion Singapore, focusing on insurance. She graduated with Honors from Mohawk College with a postgraduate diploma in International Business Management, and holds a B.A. in Economics from New York University. Her prior working experience includes work in the capital markets sector.

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