MediShield Life payouts: For true peace of mind, limit patients' exposure to big bills

Claim limits protect MediShield Life from excessive claims. How about protecting patients' share too?

The recent fracas over the small insurance payout for a complex operation at the Singapore National Eye Centre (SNEC) ("MediShield Life paid just $4.50 of senior's $4,477 post-subsidy bill"; The Straits Times, Dec 31, 2018) has shone the spotlight on the adequacy of Singapore's national health insurance scheme.

When MediShield Life was launched in 2015, the Government anticipated that, in exchange for higher premiums, Singaporeans could expect to "reduce co-insurance rates from the current 10 to 20 per cent to 3 to 10 per cent" if using subsidised healthcare services.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2019, with the headline 'For true peace of mind, limit patients' exposure to big bills'. Print Edition | Subscribe