​Understanding Integrated Shield Plans

doctor patient tablet

23 Oct 2018 | 2 min. read

Integrated Shield Plan gives you a higher coverage than MediShield Life at more cost. Find out how it works, what to consider, and what to watch out for.

Key takeaways

  • An Integrated Shield Plan (IP) is an optional health coverage provided by private insurance companies.
  • Consider the coverage you need based on the hospital ward and choice of hospitals you want to stay in, or you'll end up paying more premiums than necessary.
  • If you are not sure you have an IP, check with CPF.

What if you want more coverage?

If you want more coverage than that provided by MediShield Life, you could consider an upgrade to an Integrated Shield Plan.

Integrated Shield Plans

An Integrated Shield Plan (IP) provides coverage on top of your MediShield Life. Different types of IPs provide different coverage. Some cover you for a higher-type ward (A/B1) in a public hospital, while others cover admission into a private hospital.

An IP comprises two parts:

  • MediShield Life which you're already covered for
  • An additional private insurance coverage component offered by a private insurer

Your MediShield Life is fully paid for from your MediSave account. You will need to top up using cash or MediSave for the additional premiums for higher private insurance coverage.

If you are using MediSave to pay for the additional private insurance component of the IP premium, you can utilise up to the prevailing Additional Withdrawal Limits. When you reach the maximum withdrawal limit for MediSave, you have to pay the rest of the premiums in cash.

Tip

MediShield Life is part of an Integrated Shield Plan. There is no duplicate coverage.

Should you upgrade to an IP?

Are you wondering if you should just have MediShield Life, to upgrade to an IP or to keep the IP you already bought? There are two things to consider:

  1. Your comfort level with the types of hospitals, wards and doctors. Do you wish to stay in a Type A/B1 ward in a public hospital, or a private hospital? Do you want to be able to choose your doctor?
  2. Your budget. Can you afford the IP premiums in the long term especially when the premiums rise with age?

Private insurers provide extra protection or riders to cover the deductibles and co-insurance. You will have to pay a separate premium for these with cash. They cannot be paid using MediSave. Rider premiums also increase as you get older. All new riders from March 2018 will need to incorporate a co-payment (what you pay) of 5% or more.

If you can no longer afford or do not wish to continue paying the premiums for your IP, you can switch your plan to one which provides coverage for lower ward classes with the same insurer without any additional underwriting. Or you can cease your IP and be insured under MediShield Life only without any exclusions for pre-existing conditions.

Are you covered?

Not sure if your current health insurance is an IP? You can check by logging in to the CPF website.

Compare the IPs and buy a plan that meets your needs. Contact your insurance agent to buy a plan or make a claim.

Last updated on 09 Nov 2020