Experts to discuss healthcare costs at ST talk

Mr Mack Eng, head of medical at Prudential, is one of five panellists who will discuss the rising costs of healthcare at today's The Straits Times Roundtable.
Mr Mack Eng, head of medical at Prudential, is one of five panellists who will discuss the rising costs of healthcare at today's The Straits Times Roundtable.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

Financial and health experts will discuss the perennially hot topic of healthcare at The Straits Times Roundtable on Sustainable Healthcare today.

This is one issue many of us can never get enough of. Surveys show that the rising cost of healthcare is the top concern for most retirees as well as those planning for their golden years.

The experts will touch on topics such as how higher costs affect medical insurance, what insurers and doctors can do to mitigate these increases and what policyholders should look out for when buying Integrated Shield plans.

They will also discuss the roles that stakeholders can play to ensure healthcare remains affordable and effective.

The five panellists are: Mr Mack Eng, head of medical at Prudential; Dr Jeremy Lim, partner and head, health and life sciences practice, Asia Pacific at Oliver Wyman; Dr Carol Tan, a geriatric specialist and chairman of The Good Life Cooperative; Mr Chye Pang Hsiang, principal consulting actuary, Milliman; and Ms Pauline Lim, executive director at Life Insurance Association (LIA).

The round-table session - presented by Prudential - will be moderated by Sunday Times Invest editor Lorna Tan.

Mr Eng of Prudential noted that the Health Insurance Task Force recently made some recommendations, in an effort to rein in escalating costs and claims.

He said: "They include setting medical fee benchmarks or guidelines and encouraging insurers to include co-insurance and deductible features in their products. Other recommendations include a list of preferred health providers.

"These need to be taken seriously by all stakeholders before the problem spirals out of control. There is also a need for greater consumer education, so people can actively manage their health and healthcare costs."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 11, 2017, with the headline 'Experts to discuss healthcare costs at ST talk'. Print Edition | Subscribe