Ensure IPs are affordable in long term

Many may not pay attention to the rising cost of Integrated Shield Plans (IPs) offered by private insurers, as these premiums are paid mostly through Medisave.

I have been tracking the premiums for the Enhanced IncomeShield Plan offered by NTUC Income, and noticed that there were three adjustments made in September 2010, March 2013 and November this year, which coincides with the introduction of MediShield Life.

Ignoring the transitional subsidies provided during the move to MediShield Life, since they will end over time, and using the age group of 41 to 45 under the Enhanced IncomeShield Advantage Plan as an illustration, the premiums went up from $294 just prior to September 2010 to $647 today.

This is a jump of 120 per cent over a period of slightly more than five years.

I would deem this a significant rise in cost for Integrated Shield Plans that adds to the high cost of living.

It is necessary for one to check the affordability of such Integrated Shield Plans over the long term and select the right plan.

Ang Bock Leng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 24, 2015, with the headline 'Ensure IPs are affordable in long term'. Print Edition | Subscribe