More insurance companies offer free coronavirus protection benefits

Staff inside Clinic J at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases on Feb 14, 2020. More insurance providers have announced free benefits for policyholders who are diagnosed with the coronavirus.
Staff inside Clinic J at the National Centre for Infectious Diseases on Feb 14, 2020. More insurance providers have announced free benefits for policyholders who are diagnosed with the coronavirus.ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

SINGAPORE - Insurers NTUC Income, AIA Singapore and Manulife Singapore and DBS bank announced free benefits for policyholders who are diagnosed with the coronavirus on Monday (Feb 17).

This comes on the heels of Great Eastern's announcement last Friday (14 Feb) of a $1 million support package for customers affected by the outbreak.

Manulife Singapore has likewise set up a $1 million support fund.

An individual policyholder or life insured customer of Manulife Singapore is eligible for a $1,500 payout upon a coronavirus diagnosis until June.

An additional payout of $2,000 is available if the individual is hospitalised for a minimum of five days, bringing the total benefit to $3,500.

Death from the coronavirus brings an additional benefit of $30,000 on top of any death benefit from an existing policy.

The new benefits will not be payable if diagnosis of the coronavirus occurs within 14 days from the date of issuance or renewal for policies issued or renewed from Feb 17.

Manulife Singapore has also donated $100,000 to The Courage Fund, which provides relief to healthcare workers.

AIA Singapore is also offering free Covid-19 benefits to eligible customers, employees and tied representatives whose life or health insurance policies are issued on or before July 31 this year.

 
 
 

Individuals hospitalised due to the coronavirus can get a lump sum of $,1000, with an additional $25,000 payable upon death due to the disease.

AIA's coverage will benefit policyholders until Dec 31, 2020, or 30 days after the Disease Outbreak Response System Condition level is officially lowered to green - whichever is earlier.

NTUC Income rolled out Covid-19 benefits for three groups of policyholders: Income Personal Accident (PA) policyholders, Group Employee Benefits policyholders and policyholders under the Income Family Micro-Insurance Scheme (IFMIS).

People insured under Income's Personal Accident Assurance with Infectious Disease cover policy or Personal Accident Infectious Disease policy will receive a cash payout of $100 a day for each day of hospitalisation in Singapore due to the coronavirus, for up to 30 days, with a one-time payout of $10,000 upon death from the virus.

These are on top of existing benefits available under the relevant policies, and will last until Aug 31 this year.

Employees of organisations covered by NTUC Income's Group Employee Benefits policies will be eligible for a cash payout of $100 a day for up to 30 days of hospitalisation is available, while the payout in the event of death due to the coronavirus is $20,000.

These benefits are provided at no additional cost to employers until May 31, 2020, after which there is an option to renew them for three months at a "low premium".

IFMIS covers families whose child is studying in a local primary school and is a recipient of the Ministry of Education's Financial Assistance Scheme. It also covers families whose child is enrolled in NTUC First Campus' My First Skool and who have a gross household income that does not exceed $4,500 a month, or a monthly per capita income that is not more than $1,125.

Individuals under IFMIS do not pay a premium and are offered a payout of $5,000 in the event of death or total or permanent disability, including death due to the coronavirus.

 
 
 

Under the new measures, people under IFMIS who are diagnosed with the coronavirus are also eligible to receive a cash payout of $200 a day of hospitalisation for up to 30 days, which will last until Aug 31, 2020.

The daily payout is higher for individuals under IFMIS than other policyholders, as NTUC Income chief executive Andrew Yeo explained: "Families from low-income backgrounds are often the hardest hit when a parent or guardian of young children becomes seriously ill, suffers a permanent disability or dies.

"As Covid-19 can lead to hospitalisation and loss of income for these families for a prolonged duration, our intention is to be able to support and help them tide over this difficult period financially should the need arise."

DBS has also announced complimentary insurance coverage in relation to the coronavirus for all five million of its customers, in collaboration with Chubb Insurance Singapore.

The Covid-19 Hospital Cash Policy will enable customers to claim up to $100 a day of hospitalisation up to 14 days, and a lump sum of $1,000 upon admission to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

The policy starts on Feb 24 and will last 30 days commencing from the date of application and provides worldwide coverage, save for Mainland China and United States-sanctioned countries.

After 30 days, customers can pay a premium to have the coverage extended under the Recovery Hospital Cash Policy, which covers other sicknesses besides Covid-19 such as dengue fever. In addition, existing DBS/POSB customers can include their partners and dependent children in the application, even if they are not existing customers.

Customers can apply online or at any DBS/POSB bank branch island-wide from 24 Feb to 15 March, and will have to make a declaration that they do not have any flu-like symptoms, nor have they been to China in the 14 days leading up to the date of application.