Revisions to Cancer Coverage in IPs And How It Affects Your Company
Cancer rates are increasing in Singapore. Providing adequate cancer insurance for your employees is paramount to maintain their loyalty – it gives them peace of mind knowing that should they be diagnosed with it; their company can support them with ample financial care for treatment.
You may have read about the recent cancer coverage revisions in Integrated Shield Plans (IPs) initiating from 1st April and stressed over how these changes will impact you and your employees: “How do I know if specific cancer treatments are covered based on the existing Employee Benefits Insurance package I have provided for my employee?” and “Will my existing Employee Benefits Insurance package adequately cushion treatment costs?”.
Let us first help you by providing key information regarding these changes and exploring some concerns:
1. The cancer coverage is now limited only to cancer treatments found on the Cancer Drug List (CDL)
90 percent of cancer drug treatments approved by Singapore’s Health Sciences Authority is found in the CDL. This restriction aims to curb the growing cost of cancer treatments.
By gatekeeping the types of drugs included in the CDL, pharmaceutical companies will need to ensure that the new drugs they are looking to provide need to be:
- Clinically proven to be effective
- Value for money
As a result, cancer drug prices have dropped between 30 to 60 percent in the public sector. This benefits you in the following ways:
- More affordable cancer treatments
- Stable and effective cancer treatments
This may raise some concerns like wondering if your treatment is found in the CDL or if you or your employee may not have additional insurance if it is not. You may ask your doctor if the current treatment you’re undergoing is under the CDL, and if it is not, your current coverage will be extended by 6 months to complete the treatment. You will also have to discuss with your doctor on exploring alternatives to those approved in the CDL.
2. Cancer care coverage is split into 2 categories: Drugs and Services
IPs will no longer cover ‘as charged’ cancer treatment costs and will instead pay up to a maximum of 5 times the amount of coverage for cancer treatments of basic MediShield Life. This would mean that the monthly coverage in IPs for drugs would be from S$1,000 to $48,000 when MediShield Life would cover the monthly cost of S$200 to S$9,600. Doing so will further curb the cost of cancer treatment.
Additionally, up to S$9,600 is covered when it comes to combination therapy. Cancer services including consultation, tests, and supportive drugs that treat side effects emerging from treatments, a raised coverage of S$3,600 (formally S$1,200) would be paid through MediShield Life. For IPs, coverage reaches up to S$18,000 a year, or S$1,500 a month.
How can eazy help you through these changes?
A typical employee benefits insurance with cancer coverage alleviates out-of-pocket spendings for cancer treatments. It would be very likely that your employee may find their MediShield and Medisave insufficient in deducting cancer treatment costs. This would call for a review of their IPs or to strengthen their private health insurance and riders.
If you are providing your employees with an existing employee benefits insurance plan, it would be a good idea for you to contact your insurer and review them. If you are not providing cancer coverage for your employees and would like to explore options, you can contact us or use our aggregator to generate the best policies that will suit the needs of your company.
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