Careshield Life & Eldershield: Do you know how much it cost for nursing a disabled?

Last updated on August 2nd, 2018 at 04:08 pm

I have a friend whose parents wanted her to cancel their eldershield and eldershield supplements. Her parents assumed that these plans were redundant with the implementation of MediShield Life. I warned her against. Anyway, Careshield Life will be mandatory come year2020 for citizens age30 and above

First of all, Eldershield is a severe disability insurance introduced in 2002 as part of Singapore Health Financing System to help individuals manage the cost of long term care. Please note that this is different from Medishield Life which seeks to protect you from hospital and surgical costs.

Medishield cannot cover you for most parts of your LONG TERM rehabilitation and treatment.


So what exactly is the cost of long term care?

My father is a stroke patient since 2005.

The 3 month hospital bill was $13,000+ for the multiple surgeries to the head and brain. The bill was taken care by his integrated plan (IP). However, the cost to us family members did not stop after discharge from hospital.

Domestic helper/Maid

Over the next 13 years, we employed a maid to be the FULL TIME care giver. Maids can be costly these days but taking care of a disabled is a TOUGH TOUGH JOB that is way beyond your imagination. It simply isn’t possible without a caregiver that is full time.

Other costs

Daily necessities such as diapers, medication and milk. We have not even factored in doctor’s consultation, physio’s charges and even dentist’s fees.

Yes… someone disabled actually needs oral treatment to prevent tooth decay and further oral problems. Can you imagine the logistics needed just for a scaling procedure?


In total, an average of $1,500-$2,000 per month is needed! 

Almost all of these costs are IN CASH and cannot be covered using medisave!

Caregiving has been ongoing since 13 years ago and yes … a whopping $234,000-$312,000 has been spent… 

If we were to use a nursing home like Orange valley or Pacific healthcare, the charges there would be between $2,500-$3,500/mth!


Back then, we claimed only the basic eldershield as no one did an upgrade for my dad then. Now, MOH allows $600/year to be used from your medisave to purchase an upgrade to basic eldershield. With proper planning, this does not use too much of your cash-flow at all.


Many advisers can complete eldershield upgrade plans, but WHY contact me?

– I have deep personal understanding on this area of planning needs.




Further reading

If you are a Singaporean/PR, you will automatically be enrolled for a basic eldershield coverage at the age of 40. At present, it is not compulsory and you or your parents may opt out or cancel coverage. I have seen an argument for cancelling eldershield which can be read through this link where the author feels claims are ridiculously difficult to get.

To clarify matters, assessment is done by a doctor. Ask any one of them who is familiar and you will understand that there is a defined grading system.

As of 2018, more than $133m has been paid out already.




Careshield Life &Eldershield can pay for temporary disability unlike TPD

Disability claims are based on the 3 out of the 6 Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). This assessment is done yearly by a doctor which means that once the patient recovers, insurer’s cash benefits can stop.

MOH has statistics that 40% of claims were between 40-60 years of age. This link by healthexchange further suggests that stroke is occurring in younger people nowadays due to increase risk in obesity, hypertension and diabetes. Young stroke patients have better recovery rates and may be beneficiaries of temporary disability coverage. It is little wonder that Careshield Life now starts coverage for citizens from age30.


All eldershield supplements in NTUC/GE/AVIVA are fixed in premium which means that you can lock in cheaper rates as a younger applicant.


Many advisers can complete eldershield upgrade plans, but WHY contact me?

– I have deep personal understanding on this area of planning needs.



The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not represent the views of any other organisation.

Josh Tan Jian Liang (CHFC) Principal Author

REVIEWS: https://theastuteparent.com/josh-tan Practising financial planner with Promiseland Independent Pte Ltd. EXPERIENCE: More than 13years. Josh Tan is a young parent, speaker, author and founder of TheAstuteParent.

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