Table of Contents
AIA offers comprehensive coverage but for above average prices, making it less than ideal for budget-restricted consumers. However, AIA may benefit a few types of consumers. For instance, those who need comprehensive critical illness coverage may find AIA to be worth the additional cost. Additionally, consumers looking at private hospital plans could receive some of the highest coverage on the market.
|AIA Insurance Quick Facts
|Credit Rating (S&P): AA-
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What You Need to Know About AIA HealthShield Gold Max Integrated Shield Plans
AIA HealthShield Gold Max Integrated Shield Plans are quite expensive for most ages but if you're not restricted in cost, you may appreciate AIA's unique benefits and comprehensive coverage. AIA offers four Integrated Shield Plans: Standard, plan B Lite for B1 wards, plan B for A wards and plan A for Private hospitals. Each tier has increasing levels of coverage as is typical with Integrated Shield plans. Overall, we found that AIA's coverage is best suited for people looking for critical illness benefits and don't mind paying extra for high annual limits and pre and post-hospitalisation coverage. AIA's HealthShield Gold Max plans offer full coverage for the following benefits:
Fully Covered Treatments:
- Daily Room and Board
- Daily ICU
- Confinement in Community Hospital
- Miscellaneous Hospital Services
- Surgical Procedures
- Stem Cell Transplant
- Organ Transplant
- Pregnancy and Childbirth Complications
In addition to the standard benefits found in most Integrated Shield Plans, AIA also offers a number of healthcare perks. For instance, it will offer a pre-authorisation form for non-emergency hospital admission so you don't have to pay out-of-pocket at the hospital. It also provides on-demand video consultations with WhiteCoat for just S$12. Lastly, AIA will let you get help and advice from over 4,000 global specialists with their Medix Personal Medical Case Management to help you tailor treatments for serious conditions.
What is the Cost?
AIA's health insurance premiums fluctuate between 20% below average to 30% above average, with most individuals paying above average regardless of their age. However, AIA does offer ways to save some money. For instance, you can get 20% off consultation fees during any participating AIA healthcare partner visits and 15% off future premiums if you are part of their Vitality Programme.
AIA's HealthShield Gold Max Standard Integrated Shield Plan costs 8-15% above average for every age group, with its premiums ranging between S$53 for 25-year olds to S$788 for 75-year olds. Similarly, AIA's Gold Max B Lite, which is AIA's B1 ward plan, costs between S$70 and S$1,010 and ranges between 10-20% above the market for most people. However, seniors and those who are interested in having extra benefits for life-altering illnesses may do well with AIA's B Lite plan because premiums for older individuals are 5% below average and the added critical illness benefits can bring peace of mind for people facing higher risk of heart attacks, strokes and other long-term illnesses.
|Comparison to Market
|Standard Plan Median
|Non-Standard B1 Ward Median
AIA's HealthShield Gold Max B Integrated Shield Plan is a Ward A plan that offers fairly average coverage for above average prices. Its premiums range from S$99 for 25-year olds to S$1,924 for 75-year olds, making this plan cost 10-30% above average at its most expensive to average at its least expensive. Lastly, AIA's HealthShield Gold Max A Integrated Shield Plan is a private hospital plan that can entice those who don't mind exchanging some freedom of choice for market beating coverage. The A Plan is the most reasonably priced out of all AIA's plans, with its premiums being 10% below average for 25-35 year olds and around market average for older individuals.
|Comparison to Market
|A Ward Median
|Private Hospital Median
What are the Benefits?
AIA offers unique benefits across its non-Standard plans that can appeal to those who want to maximise coverage for life-altering ailments. For example, it provides extended post-hospitalisation treatment for 30 critical illnesses of up to 13 months, along with an additional S$50,000-S$100,000 of annual coverage and a one-year premium waiver upon total permanent disability. It also covers congenital abnormalities with no waiting time for the insured.
So to break down each plan, we found that AIA HealthShield Gold Max's Integrated Shield Standard Plan provides an annual limit of S$150,000, S$1,700 daily room and board benefit, S$5,200 chemotherapy coverage per month and S$2,900 ICU coverage per day. Due to the fact that Standard plans have the same benefits regardless of insurer, we can't recommend AIA's Standard plan to those on a budget, since it costs above average.
Similarly, the Max B Lite Plan offers a standard set of coverages for a non-Standard B1 ward, including a S$300,000 annual limit, 100 days each of pre and post-hospitalisation coverage, pregnancy complications, accidental dental and organ transplant coverage. Once again, due to the above average cost but fairly market standard benefits, younger consumers on a budget and individuals who are not at risk for major illnesses may find cheap full coverage B1 ward plans from insurers.
|Market Average (Standard)
|Value (Limit/S$ Premium)
|Daily Ward (Non-ICU)
|Market Average Limits (B1 Ward)
|Value 25-Year Old (Coverage/S$ Premium)
|Daily Ward (Non-ICU)
AIA's HealthShield Gold Max B Integrated Shield Plan, in contrast to its above average pricing, offers an annual limit of 20% below the A ward plan average and below average pre and post-hospitalisation coverage. However, AIA's 100 day extension and S$75,000 additional cover for critical illness could be worth the extra cost. Additionally, there is also coverage for cancer treatment, renal dialysis and immunosuppressants for organ transplants at private hospitals—the only benefit of its kind on the market. So, while AIA's B plan is not as competitively priced as other A ward plans on the market, the extra benefits it offers and the opportunity to get care at a private hospital may offset the extra cost.
|Market Average (A Ward)
|Value (Coverage/S$ Premium)
|Daily Ward (Non-ICU)
|Market Average (Private Plans)
|Value (Coverage/S$ Premium)
|Daily Ward (Non-ICU)
With regards to AIA's HealthShield Gold Max A Integrated Shield Plan, consumers willing to use only AIA's panel of specialists or pay private hospital premiums to stay at public hospitals will have a market-beating annual limit of S$2,000,000 and 13 months of pre and post-hospitalisation benefits. While this plan may benefit consumers who know they'll end up staying at public hospitals most of the time, those who want the freedom to choose their own private hospital may not fare as well. This is because seeking treatment from a non-AIA approved specialist will decrease your annual limit to S$600,000 (40% below the private hospital average annual limit) and your pre and post-hospitalisation treatment to 100 days each.
AIA HealthShield Gold Max Integrated Shield Plan Riders
AIA has one main rider, Max VitalHealth, that complements each of its base plans, with two riders available for Plan A. The riders vary widely in pricing, with the B plan rider costing up to 36% above market average and the B Lite plan rider costing between 14-36% below average. However, consumers who have the AIA private hospital option can save on their total health insurance costs by choosing the VitalHealth A plan, as the total cost hovers just below market average.
This rider promises to keep your out-of-pocket costs to S$3,000 per policy year if you use their AQHP specialists, go to a public hospital or if you choose to get a pre-authorisation form at a non-AQHP. As with other riders on the market, it will reduce your co-pay to 5% instead of 10%. It also provides a variety of post-hospitalisation benefits and coverage for early detection for policyholder who are 40 years or older. Lastly, you may also enjoy a deductible waiver on your first private hospital claim, which will reset every 3 years that you do not make a claim. While it is still subject to a co-pay, this benefit can save you hundreds of dollars on OOP costs.
|Premiums & Benefits
|Plan A w/ Booster
|Family Member Accom.
|Emergency Accidental Outpatient
|Ambulance Services (per treatment)
|Post-Hospitalisation Home Nursing
If you have room in your budget, you can choose to add on the Booster, which will cover emergency outpatient treatment, ambulance coverage and outpatient treatment for HFMD and Dengue Fever. However, it is worth noting that ambulance service and emergency accidental outpatient benefits are usually included in most insurers' riders, so it may not make sense to consumers to have to pay extra to get these benefits. For instance, private hospital riders from AXA, Great Eastern and Aviva all offer these benefits for a total rider-base plan cost that is S$300-S$400 less than AIA.
Where Does AIA HealthShield Gold Max Integrated Shield Plans Fall Short?
Due to the generally high pricing, we believe consumers on a budget or those who don't need these extra benefits could fare better with other insurers. Furthermore, AIA's best benefits are restricted to people who use their AQHP specialists or get a pre-authorisation form. This means that AIA may not be the best option for those who are loyal to certain specialists who are not on AIA's approved list.
How AIA HealthShield Gold Max Integrated Shield Plans Fares Against the Competition
AIA's health insurance plans focus on high amounts of coverage and hard to find benefits. Thus, it's best to see how it compares with other premium health insurance plans that prioritise benefits over price.
Great Eastern competes with AIA on private hospital coverage. Its SupremeHealth P Plus plan offers a S$1.5 million annual limit and market-beating psychiatric coverage. On the other hand, while AIA has a higher limit by S$500,000, Great Eeastern doesn't drop its annual limit if you choose not to use their specialists.
However, AIA beats out Great Eastern with pricing for younger individuals. Premiums for 25-35 year olds are 10% below average, whereas Great Eastern's premiums are 7% above average for people in their 20's. Older individuals will have to pay more with AIA, as premiums hover around average, while Great Eastern costs 5-10% below average. Furthermore, AIA offers features not seen in Great Eastern, like full coverage for palliative care and additional critical illness benefits.
|AIA HealthShield Gold Max
|Great Eastern SupremeHealth
|S$300K - S$2mn
|S$500K - S$1.5mn
|Pre-Hospitalisation Benefit (Days)
|Post-Hospitalisation Benefit (Days)
|Radiotherapy for Cancer
|Chemotherapy for Cancer
|Hospitalisation & Surgical Benefits
|Inpatient Palliative Care
|In-patient Psychiatric Care
|S$3.5K - S$5K
|S$17.5K - S$25K
|Post-Hosp Psychiatric Care
|S$1K - S$5K
Thus, if you are not on a tight budget and want expansive coverage and perks, AIA could be better. On the other hand, if you prefer to have more flexibility in your doctors and want an affordable public hospital plan, then Great Eastern will be a better fit.
Before You Buy: Policy Eligibility & Exclusions
You can buy AIA's HealthShield Gold Max integrated shield plans if you are a citizen, permanent resident or foreigner. The last entry age is 75, but it is possible to renew this plan in perpetuity until your death.
AIA does not cover treatments for the following:
- Weight-related issues
- Elective cosmetic or plastic surgery
- Routine eye and ear examinations
- Private nursing charges
- Purchase of medical equipment such as hospital beds and wheelchairs
- Self-inflicted injuries or suicide
- Injuries sustained while participating in illegal activity.
Pre-existing conditions may be covered if you declare it on your application. However, you should note that while these treatments are excluded, your MediShield life may already be covering some of them.
Being a Policyholder: Claims, Contact & More
AIA has over 380 approved specialists, which lies within the average and 4,000 global specialists for your pre and post-hospitalisation needs. Similar to other health insurers, they also provide a pre-authorisation form that gets approved within 3 business days to help you avoid paying out of pocket for non-emergency hospitalisation and day surgery expenses. Otherwise, hospitalisation claims can be submitted electronically via your hospital at the time of admission or discharge.
Claims that are related to follow-up appointments, such as post-hospitalisation expenses, will require a submission of the Further Claim Form (linked below). For all claims, you must also submit the relevant documents including, but not limited to, original final bills and receipts, clinical abstract application form and copy of detailed inpatient discharge summary.
Is AIA HealthShield Gold Max Right For You?
AIA's HealthShield Gold Max integrated shield plans fail to impress when it comes to price, but its A plan and riders offer rare coverage benefits. If you are willing to stick to exclusively AIA-approved doctors and specialists, you will be rewarded with high annual limits, the longest pre and post-hospitalization benefits on the market and deductible waivers. However, if you are looking for an affordable public hospital plan that gives you the best bang for your buck, you might fare better with other Integrated Shield Plans.
To help you find the best health insurance plans for your needs, we analysed benefits and premium data for all the insurers who offer Integrated Shield Plans. We looked at unique value-adds like rare benefits, market beating coverage or add-ons and compared them to the premiums you would have to pay. Premiums were gathered based on 25, 35, 45, 55 and 65 year olds with no pre-existing conditions.
The ratings you see above reflect the average coverage limits of the plans as well as how cheap or expensive the premiums are. The claims information refers to how easy it is to make a claim (for instance, can you file online or do you have to visit a branch), how many providers the insurer works with and how easy it is to get in contact with a plan representative. If there is data on how quickly claims are typically processed, we will take that consideration as well.