Finance & Compliance

Compulsory Long-Term Healthcare Kicks in for Singapore

Katie Ash

Oct 1, 2020

What is CareSheild Life?

CareShield Life is an enhanced long-term medical insurance plan, providing greater coverage than the existing ElderShield offering.

These two initiatives came as a response from the government to address the aging population of Singapore and provide greater security and assurance of long-term care.

Every Singapore citizen or permanent resident born in 1980 or later will be automatically enrolled in the scheme from today, or on the day they turn 30, regardless of whether any pre-existing medical conditions or disabilities exist. Enrollment is mandatory in this age group, as a universal health initiative of Singapore.

For Singaporeans born before 1980, enrollment is optional, and will only be opened towards the end of 2021. For this group, there will be exclusions on anyone who is already severely disabled. However, this group may still be covered under the ElderShield scheme.

CareShield Life vs ElderCare

“CareShield Life and ElderShield are key pillars of Singapore’s social safety net for our long-term care needs should any of us become severely disabled, including in our old age.”
Ms Jeanette Wong, Chairperson of The CareShield Life Council

Information Source: DBS

What is the definition of ‘severely disabled’?

Severely disabled qualifies as the inability to perform three of the six activities of daily life (ADL). These are:

  • Eating/Drinking
  • Showering
  • Dressing
  • Toileting
  • Functional Mobility — transferring oneself from one place to another
  • Mobility — walking on flat surfaces

What is the CareShield Life claim payout:

The ElderShield programme provided monthly payouts of $400 for up to a period of 72 months (six years). Enrollment was automatic from the age of 40, unless an individual opted out.

CareShield Life offers higher payouts, starting at $600 per month in 2020, and increasing annually (by 2% until 2025 when reassessed) until a claim is made or the individual reaches the age of 67.

Payouts will continue for life, or as long as the person remains severely disabled.

What are the premiums for CareShield Life?

A self-assessment to check the premium you will be paying under CareShield Life is available here:

The premiums currently start at $206 annually for males and $253 annually for females, assuming the starting age in 2020 of 30 years old.

The government will provide $250 in transitional subsidies for anyone who is eligible to enroll in the scheme between 2020–2024. Additional subsidies have been announced and will be based on monthly per capita household income.

Source: CNA

CareShield Life premiums can be paid for from an individual’s MediSave account. The Singapore government has also announced subsidies and support measures.

What is MediSave Life

The launch of MediSave Life will allow individuals to make additional withdrawals from their MediSave accounts to pay for long-term care needs.

Singapore citizens and permanent residents who are aged 30 and over, and are or become severely disabled will be able to make monthly cash withdrawals of up to $200 from either their own or their spouse's MediSave account to pay for care needs.

The withdrawal value will be subject to the baseline balance held within the MediSave account. The table below outlines the monthly withdrawal limits based on balance.

Source: CPF

“As our population ages, we want to ensure that Singaporeans continue to have accessible and affordable long-term care. With CareShield Life, severely disabled Singaporeans can be assured that they will receive financial support for life. They will also have another avenue to fund their long-term care needs, by tapping on their MediSave savings under MediSave Care. Together with ElderFund, which provides discretionary government assistance to lower-income, severely disabled Singapore Citizens, these schemes will collectively enhance support for long-term care costs.”
Mr Gan Kim Yong, Singapore Minister for Health

For more information on CareShield Life and MediSave Life visit:

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