What is the best insurance plan in Singapore?


In my 13 years in the industry, I have always been asked many times by clients this one question:

Is there that one plan that covers everything? Like a jumbo loaded plan of goodness that just does its thing and I just pay the premiums?

Unfortunately, the answer is no. There is no one plan that solves ALL our needs. In fact, our insurance portfolio is made up of multiple plans with different purposes. And perhaps before we understand what the best plan is, we need to understand what a good insurance portfolio should cover.


A working adult should have the following coverages in place:

  • Hospitalisation

  • Critical Illness

  • Accident and Disability

  • Income Protection/Long Term Disability Income

  • Death/Total and Permanent Disability

That sure seems like a lot of coverage types... but what do these terms really mean?


Hospitalisation

If you can only afford a small amount of money for insurance, this is the BARE MINIMUM coverage you should have!


A hospital plan will cover you in the event you are hospitalised due to any illness or injury (Except Pre-Existing Conditions that have already been excluded or Aesthetic Surgery). Bills incurred in the hospital would be covered under this plan, provided some prerequisites are met:

  1. Either you are warded 12hr or more OR

  2. You had surgery done (inpatient or day surgery)

These days, hospital plans also cover for Pre and Post Hospitalisation. Which means tests and consults leading up to a hospital stay and even post-recovery treatment like physiotherapy etc can be claimable.


Critical Illness

A critical illness policy would cover you for early to late-stage critical illness and it should provide a lump sum upon a diagnosis by a medical practitioner. If you already have a hospital plan in place, the monies you receive from such coverage will be helpful in these circumstances:


  1. Your company only covers you a paid leave of 2 months but your treatment requires a longer time thus you have to go on unpaid leave

  2. You might need to hire a helper or nurse to aid in your recovery

  3. You might need to make modifications in the house due to your current condition

  4. Or you just want to eat healthily or take taxis more instead of public transportation.

Whatever the reason, the lump sum will definitely come in handy. Do note also that insurers are less likely to insure you in the future once they know you already have a diagnosis for a critical illness. Therefore, the lump sum paid out might have to last you for a long period of time should it be detected early.


Accident and Disability Coverage

This type of coverage will enable you to be covered in the event of an accident. Most accident plans cover for the following:

  • Accidental Death (Loss of life due to an accident, the family would receive a pay-out)

  • Accidental Disablement (If you were permanently or partially disabled due to an accident, you will receive a pay-out)

  • Medical Reimbursement (Certain outpatient or inpatient expenses can be claimed for should it be the result of an accident)

In the event of accidental death or disablement, a lump sum would be paid out. In the case of disablement, this is usually a pre-determined percentage of the base coverage (E.g., 1% for the loss of a pinkie finger). The medical reimbursement will reimburse the expenses incurred in the event of an accident for outpatient or even inpatient expenses (Think GP visits, Diagnostic Tests, Physio Therapy Treatments etc).


Income Protection/Long Term Disability Income

This type of coverage is essential if you are drawing an income currently and you cannot afford to lose it should the untoward happen. Whether we work or not, there are fixed expenses each month that need to be paid. (School Fees for Children, Helper’s Salary, Home Loan, Car Loan etc.)


Imagine if you are unable to work for a considerable duration due to ANY illness or ANY injury. Do these expenses then disappear? No. In fact, we might just incur more fixed expenses whilst injured or ill. Thus, having income protection or long-term disability income plan helps in maintaining the day-to-day expenses of the household whilst you recover or should you be permanently unable to work.


Death/Total and Permanent Disability

Death is inevitable and we all wish to have long and fruitful lives. But premature death affects our loved ones dearly.

If you have dependents (people who are depending on your income), this coverage is important as it enables them to continue living in the event you pass on. This is especially important should you have loans under your name which will definitely not disappear overnight. Instead, your loved ones will be made to pay them for you.

Total and Permanent Disability coverage is usually paired with a death cover as it is a state in which you are unable to get any gainful employment as you are totally and permanently disabled


Let’s look at an example of Nathaniel Tan:


One fine day, Mr Tan goes out for a jog and gets knocked down by a car. He is immediately taken to the hospital and given immediate medical attention. He stays in the hospital for 2 weeks and is then told that he is unable to work for the next year due to him needing several surgeries including the amputation of a leg. His company awards him 60 days of hospitalization leave and the rest of the time is to be no paid leave.


Which policies will pay and which won’t?


Bills in hospital (Including Post Hospital Follow Up Treatment) – Hospitalization Policy that will be reimbursed expenses incurred in the hospital

Amputation of Leg Comes under disability – Accident Policy with a lump sum pay-out for disablement

Loss of Income due to injury – Income Protection plan will pay a monthly income till he is able to get back to work. Should he be unable to work for the rest of his life, it will pay till a max age (E.g. 65)

X Critical Illness policy will not pay

X Death and Total and Permanent Disablement policy will not pay


So, what then becomes the best plan to buy? It really depends on each individual and it is always good to seek the advice of a financial planner who can sit down and go through them with you! The best plan, therefore, is the plan that meets YOUR needs! I hope this article has been helpful and if you have any further questions, you can send me a message in the contact box below. I wish you well! 😊




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AgentMamaSG

aka Shalini Arul, a blessed mama to 2 beautiful children, Dhruv and Ria, a Chartered Financial Consultant in the insurance industry for 12+ years. Also a member of the Million Dollar Round Table and an International Dragon Award qualifier.

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