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Anger Mounts Over MOH Move to Lower Cancer Treatment Coverage for Integrated Shield Plans

The Health Ministry has announced that from 1 April, Integrated Shield Plans will pay up to a max of 5 times the amount of coverage for cancer treatments that the basic MediShield Life does.

The max amount will apply to all plans, regardless of whether policyholders are pegged at public sector B1 or A class wards, or private sector care.

This amount is lower than the current coverage by insurers.

Most insurers foot policyholders’ bills “as charged”, while patients bear the usual deductible and co-payment.

The change will apply to all policyholders from the time they renew their IP contract

Those who are already being treated for cancer will have their current coverage extended for 6 months to allow them to complete their regimen.

Cost of cancer treatments have been growing at a rate of 20 percent a year, according to MOH.

The Ministry says that it hopes the change will changes “will keep cancer treatments and insurance premiums affordable in the longer term”.

This is the second phase of the move by MOH to lower cost of cancer treatments.

The first phase started in September 2022 and affected people who are on only the basic MediShield Life plan.

The overall shift by MOH has angered the Singaporean public, with many policyholders complaining that they pay higher premiums for less benefits.

Said Low Kian Hong:

“My rider premium increase almost 2 times in the past few years, and now with these changes I will be paying a higher premium for even less benefits. How can?”

Alice Chua said:

“Shouldn’t the government be taking this up with pharmaceutical companies and insurers? Why is it always us the consumer who has to bear the most pain?”

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