If you’re wondering how to choose a health insurance plan from so many different policy types and insurers, read this. The team at Expat Insurance shares helpful tips to help compare health insurance in Singapore, including key insurance terms to know, insurance deductible costs and more.
#1 Know the key insurance terms
Insurance can be an overwhelming subject, particularly if you’re not familiar with all of the key insurance terms. In fact, paying little attention to the key terms of insurance is a common mistake that many people make.
So, before you start to compare health insurance in Singapore, it’s a good idea to read up on some of the common insurance terms used. These include:
An insurance premium is the amount of money you pay for an insurance policy. This is the price you pay the insurer in exchange for coverage. The price of your premium depends on the type of insurance you buy.
An insurance deductible is the amount of money you are required to pay out of pocket before your insurance plan covers the rest of the claim. For example, a deductible of $500 means you must pay the first $500 of the medical bill before your insurance covers the remainder.
This is another charge that you have to pay out of pocket, even if you have insurance. A co-payment is a flat amount you pay toward each bill.
Co-insurance is the amount you have to pay for covered health care after you’ve met your deductible. Like co-payment, co-insurance is a way of sharing the cost of health care with your insurance policy. It is usually a fixed percentage of the total cost of care, rather than a flat amount, that you pay toward each bill (once the deductible has been paid).
A rider is a type of coverage that can be added to your basic health insurance plan for an additional premium. Typical riders include dental, vision, maternity and coverage for pre-existing conditions.
Exclusions or limitations
These are the chronic health conditions, situations or treatments that your health insurance plan won’t cover – for example, pre-existing conditions or non-medical cosmetic surgery.
Waiting period or moratorium
This is the duration for which you may have to wait before specific coverage benefits will apply. For instance, all maternity insurance policies come with a waiting period of at least 10 months. This means that you won’t be able to claim any maternity-related benefits during this period.
Top-up insurance is a tailored insurance solution that considers your existing insurance benefits and adds where your plan’s benefits are lacking. This is ideal for anyone who feels their existing health insurance benefits may not be enough to protect them.
#2 Factor in your budget
Once you’re familiar with all of the key insurance terms, you’ll want to put your new lingo to work, determining whether you want a higher insurance deductible or premium when choosing health insurance in Singapore.
Most health insurance policies offer a variety of deductibles to suit different individuals’ budgets and needs. Insurance deductibles will also vary, depending on your country of residence.
Usually, choosing a health insurance policy with a larger deductible means that you’ll spend less on your premium costs. That said, if you want an affordable premium you may want to consider choosing a higher deductible. Of course, this means higher out-of-pocket payments if you need to make a claim. In this case, you’ll want to make sure you have enough in savings to cover the full cost of the deductible.
#3 Consider your lifestyle and health needs
Before choosing a health insurance policy, you’ll want to think about your priorities and consider the needs of your family.
For example, there’s no point in picking a health insurance plan with a maternity rider if you have no plans to start a family in the near future. And, if you’re in shape, young and in good health, coverage for pre-existing conditions may be unnecessary.
For expats, it’s especially important to take into account your travel schedule when choosing health insurance in Singapore. If you travel frequently or plan on moving to another international posting in the future, you’ll want to think about getting international health insurance. While this type of insurance might mean paying higher premiums, the benefits can certainly pay off in the long run for many reasons. International health insurance is more comprehensive, usually coming with higher limits, a wide network of providers and additional benefits such as travel and dental coverage. Most importantly, it offers both local and worldwide coverage for treatment at world-class medical facilities wherever you are in the world. So, if you travel abroad to visit family on the regular or jet off to nearby countries on your weekends, this option could be worthy of your attention.
If you require extra coverage for you or your family, you can even get a top-up insurance plan, which increases a client’s accident, annual and lifetime limits. This is particularly useful for addressing any gaps in employer-provided health plans, which are often minimal, covering only basic emergency and hospitalisation bills. You may want to add on dental or maternity to top up your existing employer-provided medical insurance plan.
How an insurance deductible can help with your top-up plan
If you decide to purchase top-up coverage, having an insurance deductible can actually be advantageous. Not only will it help lower your premium but you’ll also be able to apply eligible costs covered by your existing policy toward the deductible on your top-up plan, even if it’s fully covered by your existing health insurance policy.
Find out more
For more information, get in touch with Expat Insurance. Their brokers are experienced in working with expats to compare health insurance plans, and determine the best health and life insurance policies to suit their needs.
#B1-52 The Riverwalk, 20 Upper Circular Road
6401 9201 | expatinsurance.com.sg
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