Planning for a baby & understanding how an insurance policy will cover you during this time is critical. You want to be able to focus on your baby instead of on your bills!
In Singapore, welcoming a newborn to the family is costly. Medical expenses for each pregnancy could range from $10,000 to $150,000, particularly in the event of complications.
GoBear talks to Pacific Prime Singapore for some tips for maternity health insurance applicable to both before and after birth.
Tip #1: Don't Go Solo! Take Advantage of Maternity Benefits.
First and foremost, the biggest tip about maternity insurance in Singapore is to actually get it! This is an especially hard and fast rule for expatriate mothers-to-be because access to public healthcare system for foreigners is limited. Furthermore, costs for labour and delivery at a private healthcare facility in Singapore start at about SG$15,000 for a healthy baby born without complications. Of course, complications could rack up a hospital bill that could easily reach hundreds of thousands of dollars!
Also, don’t forget that pregnancy is much more than the delivery itself. Pre and post-natal care are also important costs that need to be considered. For all these Maternity Benefits, maternity health insurance is a good investment.
Tip #2: Beware of the Long Waiting Period.
What some people don’t realise when they get pregnant is that there is a long Waiting Period associated with maternity health insurance. This means that if you were to sign up right before, or even months before having your baby, your maternity insurance would not pay out any benefits, and would effectively be useless.
Since it may take 10 months, or possibly even more, to be able to make a claim against your maternity insurance plan, planning ahead is of major importance. If you don’t already have an insurance plan that includes maternity cover, now is the time to speak to an insurance professional about obtaining some.
Tip #3: Take Note of the Restrictions On Doctors or Medical Facilities In Your Plan.
How healthcare and insurance can work in different countries can vary wildly. One thing that is pretty universal, however, is that private insurers find just about every way they can under the sun to reduce costs. One such method that can put off some customers is to restrict access to a specific network of healthcare facilities and providers.
Because of this, it’s important for expecting mothers to question whether potential insurance providers place any such restrictions on their maternity plans. When you compare International Health Insurance plans on GoBear, you'll see a wide variety of plans available that place no restrictions on where you can get treatment before, during, or after you have your baby. Freedom of choice is the name of the game! You could even receive care in a country outside Singapore if you wanted to. Still unsure? Speak to an experienced insurance agent.
Tip #4: The Middle Ground Between Paying Now and Paying Later.
Even though you will have paid Premiums up-front or on a monthly basis for your insurance coverage, as many of us know, insurance costs don’t stop there. Often, insurance plans of all types require some kind of Deductible or Co-Payment in order to make a claim on them. Just to be clear, a deductible is a flat amount that must be paid in order to receive benefits on an insurance claim, while a co-payment is a small percentage of the total cost for medical services received that is paid by the insured.
Fortunately, most plans allow deductibles and co-payments to be adjusted before an insurance plan is finalised, or renewed. Just know that lower deductibles and co-pays generally lead to higher premiums. Talk to your insurance agent to find out how you can get the most value from your plan based on expected usage.
Tip #5: Make Claims Easy.
As an exhausted new mother who has just gone through one of the most physically taxing moments in her life, the last thing you want is to worry about filing insurance claims forms to make sure the costs of the delivery and hospitalisation are covered. For this reason, make sure the medical facility you plan on delivering your baby has direct billing with your insurer, which simply means the hospital bills the insurer directly. If the hospital does not offer direct billing, speak with your insurance agent to see what can be done to make the claims process quick and seamless.
Tip #6: Safety Starts With Health Insurance.
As a parent, your responsibility for the new life you brought into the world starts from the moment of conception. You assume responsibility by first providing comprehensive Newborn Care Health Insurance coverage for your baby. A good maternity insurance plan will cover any complications that may affect your baby before, during and after delivery, including any time spent in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, incubation and more. Besides, as a new parent, you want your children to have the best advantages in life, and having parents that are saddled with huge medical bills is certainly no advantage.
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