How Well Do You Know Your Medical Insurance Policy?

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Life is full of surprises. We can’t predict the future which is exactly why we have insurance. But over time, needs change so it’s always best to consider, or at least revisit, an existing medical insurance plan, to make sure it still offers the coverage we need.


Your insurance specialist can guide you through the fine print of eligibility, scope and limits of coverage, general inclusions and special conditions associated with your plan. All your questions can be discussed openly with an insurance advisor. The idea is for you to take control of your policy, fully understand your coverage and be familiar with the policy terms, not just the Table of Benefits.


Here are five common scenarios to consider:


Why is my pre-existing condition excluded?

A pre-existing condition is a health problem that existed before your first day of coverage of your policy. It can be something as common as hay fever or a more serious condition such as diabetes or cancer. Some conditions may not affect your coverage at all, while other conditions could result in limited coverage, exclusions or an increased premium.


When you apply for coverage, an underwriter will review your history of previous conditions to determine the possibility of recurrence or potential that the existing condition may develop more at a later date. The underwriter will then advise the insurer of the most appropriate exclusions moving forward.


Why has my premium increased at renewal?

An increase in the premium is policy dependent and can vary between insurers. Premiums are often primarily based on age. The older you are, the higher the premium. This is because the chance of health deteriorating increases as we age and, consequently, increases the likelihood of more claims. Some insurers will penalize you for making a claim during the policy year. In turn, this contributes to your premium increasing when you renew. Medical inflation will also come into play. As new drugs and technologies advance, medical costs increase. In order to remain profitable, insurers will review their rates and adjust them accordingly.


Why is my claim under consideration?

This can be a little disconcerting, especially when you have paid your medical insurance premium on time and expect your insurer to respond accordingly. Some policy benefits may limit the number of visits to a medical practitioner. Keep in mind, if your visit to a general practitioner (GP) is not medically essential, it’s likely your claim will be rejected by your insurer.


What else should I know?

Check whether or not your policy requires a referral from your GP before you see a specialist. Also, check if the practitioner must be accredited and recognized by the relative health authority in order to be covered. It’s important to contact your insurer directly before required treatment or hospitalization to ensure your policy will cover you.


Should I consider a Top-Up?


It’s not uncommon for expats in Singapore to feel they are under-protected when it comes to medical insurance. Healthcare plans provided by employers often have low limits that can leave you financially exposed to large hospital bills should you have an accident or illness. Common gaps in insurance provided by employers which leave individuals and families financially exposed to large medical bills:


* Low hospital and surgery limits


* Limited or no outpatient benefits


* Caps on critical illness and cancer coverage


* No freedom of choice, restricted to a panel of doctors or lists of approved clinics


* Local coverage only, not worldwide


* No maternity benefits


* No dental benefits


We all need a health check from time to time. Maybe it’s time your policy had one, too!


For personalised assistance and complimentary advisory services, contact Expat Insurance at 6401 9201 or visit


Medical Insurance For Expats In Singapore GET A QUOTE

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