Must see method to save on your NTUC Incomeshield plan!

I use the NTUC Incomeshield Enhanced Preferred plan and I've always wondered if I was paying excessively for my it. Based on my recent memory, there had been quite a few rounds of premium increments.

I am more concern about how to save on premium. This comparison is focused on the premium of the main plan and the corresponding rider. My main plan covers up to private hospital and my rider (plus rider) covers 100% of the bills (i.e. Deductible and Co-insurance are covered).

Hence, no cash is required if I am hospitalised.

I did a market comparison across all the insurers and these are my findings!

AVIVA has the highest premium for Integrated Shield Plan with Rider

From the table above, Aviva MyShield Plan 1 & MyHealthPlus Rider consistently ranks the highest in premium across the age groups from age 25 to 40.

If you are 45 and above, AIA Healthshield Gold Max and Max Essential rider have the most expensive premium.

As expected, Raffles Health being the new offeror for Integrated Shield Plan (Raffles Shield Private and Key rider) has the lowest premium for the entire age range. Do note that the Raffles health Key rider is with the mandatory 5% co-insurance.

Excluding Raffles Health from the comparison, the next cheapest is AXA Shield Plan A & Basic Care Rider). NTUC Income Enhanced and Plus rider is within the 50th percentile across the age ranges. (Yes!)

AIA has the widest premium differences across different age groups

I was concerned that low premiums at a younger age is not reflective of total lifelong premiums. Higher premiums can surface at later age groups.

In such a situation, I may be forced to downgrade in order to keep some coverage in my older years when premiums are way higher.

Therefore, I wanted to know which companies currently have the widest premium difference range across the age group from Age 25 to 50.

From Graph 1, AIA Healthshield Gold Max and Max Essential Rider has the widest premium difference across Age 25 to 50 or 169%. 2nd in place is Prudential, followed by NTUC Income.  (Ok! NTUC Income is also not the highest. Phew!)

Comparison for the cash component of each insurer's shield plan

There is a cap on how much Medisave I can use to pay for my medical insurance.

Looking at above table, I'd need to fork out $634 cash, while another $300 is paid using my Medisave. My total premium will be $934 per year.

If you are having the Aviva Myshield Plan 1 and its MyHealthplus rider, you are expected to pay $1,021 a year! Cash!! Hopefully, you are aware of it when your premium is next due.

Do you really need 100% coverage for all private hospitals?

I guess by now you are either put off by the hefty premium or you are relieved that you are not paying the as much as others. Either way, it is an indisputable conclusion that we are all expected to pay higher premiums if there are no caps.

An overconsumption mindset.

Insurance works on risk pooling principle. It needs only a small group of policy holders to over-consume with unnecessarily large bills for it to affect the pool's viability.

The insurer will raise premiums in order to maintain cost neutrality and company profit margin.

The full rider promotes overconsumption by the policy holders and can be exploited by hospital and clinics. As a result, insurers are introducing alternative co-payment rider to arrest this issue.

A few good examples are the NTUC Income Assist rider, AIA Max Essential A Saver Rider, Aviva MyHealthplus A-II Option, Great Eastern Total Shield Platinum Select etc.

I see these alternatives as a method to “get out of a sinking ship” where I am grouped with anyone with the propensity to over-consume. By changing riders, the premium savings is substantial too.

By the way, did I mentioned that if you choose these riders, it is NOT considered as getting a new plan but as a “downgrade of plan”.

Hence, there will be 100% acceptance by the insurer.

Even if you have medical conditions such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, there will be no exclusions.

I chose NTUC Incomeshield Assist rider over Plus rider!

Back to my NTUC Incomeshield plan choose. I'm in the age 35-40. By choosing to downgrade to the assist rider instead of keeping my plus rider, I will be paying only $648/y

That’s a 30% saving!

How often can you get 30% discount off your insurance premium? 

Some may think that it may be penny wise but pound foolish. I may be saving $286 per year in exchange for a potential risk of up to only $3,000 with the 10% co-payment.

But I'd bet my dollar that the premiums for the plus rider which is the 100% coverage will exponentially increase as there is little control on overconsumption. 

At least for me, this decision to downgrade the rider was a matter of time.

Conclusion

Medical Overconsumption is a problem.

Moral hazard is a problem.

Medical clinic and private hospital are a problem.

These are external factors that are out of my control.

What I can control is the premium that I pay yearly when that premium notice appears in my letter box! I am glad that I am not paying too much for my plans.

If you are interested in knowing how much premium you are paying compared to others, you try out our

Click to see Singapore 1st Premium calculator for Integrated Shield Plan.

Last updated on January 16th, 2019 at 04:34 pm

The Financial Advocate

I am always fascinated in how parents approach financial issues in their daily lives. There is an overwhelming amount of information available and through this blog, I hope I can shed some light on financial matters concerning parents!

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