The Singapore government will take over the administration of the ElderShield scheme from insurers in 2021, in order for policyholders to enjoy a smoother upgrading to CareShield Life and benefit from improvements to the claims assessment process under the new scheme.
In a media release on Monday (7 January), the Ministry of Health (MOH) said that there are currently 1.3 million ElderShield policyholders served by three private insurers: Aviva, Income and Great Eastern Life Assurance.
ElderShield insurers will transfer to the government the liabilities and corresponding assets backing these liabilities for all policies under the ElderShield scheme. The valuation comes up to approximately $2.9 billion.
Holders of ElderShield Supplements will not be affected, and will continue to be served by their existing insurers.
Enhanced assessment framework
The government administration will commence together with the launch of CareShield Life for existing cohorts (those born in 1979 or earlier) in 2021.
ElderShield policyholders who are not upgrading to CareShield Life will remain covered by their existing policies. They will still benefit from improvements to the claims assessment process that will be implemented for CareShield Life, such as an enhanced assessment framework that takes into account cognitive impairments.
Government to run scheme on not-for-profit basis
The government will administer the ElderShield scheme on a not-for-profit basis. In the event that the actual claims experience turns out better than expected, there will continue to be premium rebates for ElderShield policyholders.
No action is required on the part of existing ElderShield policyholders at this point. From now until the transfer is completed in 2021, the insurers will continue to issue new ElderShield policies and serve ElderShield policies.
MOH will work with the insurers to ensure a smooth transition, and more information will be provided to each ElderShield policyholder closer to the date of transfer.
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