The Ministry of Health (MOH) in Singapore has reviewed the income criteria for means-tested healthcare subsidy and assistance schemes. More than 365,000 Singapore Residents will benefit from higher subsidies when the revised means-test income criteria are implemented by October 2019.
MOH provides means-tested subsidies to support Singapore Residents with healthcare cost, with higher subsidies extended to lower-income groups. Taking into consideration changes in household incomes and healthcare expenditure, MOH will be revising the income criteria for all schemes and services that are means-tested using the monthly per-capita household income (PCHI) criteria. The monthly PCHI criteria for each subsidy tier will be raised, with increases ranging from SGD 100 to SGD 300.
Over the last few years, Singapore has enhanced existing financing and subsidy schemes and introduced new ones to enhance healthcare affordability for Singapore residents. In this year’s budget, the Singapore government expanded healthcare support for elderly born between 1950 and 1959.
A 2018 survey of 1,214 Singapore residents conducted by insurance company, Prudential, found that 55% were not ready to live to 100 years of age from a financial or health perspective. The average life expectancy in Singapore was 83.1 in 2017 and it continues to increase. The number of residents over the age of 65 increased by 52.7% from 338,387 in 2010 to 516,692 in 2017. It is projected to reach 610,000 by 2020 and exceed 900,000 by 2030. A large number of the elderly suffer from more than one chronic condition. This is expected to pose a challenge for Singapore’s healthcare system in the near future.
(Sources: Ministry of Health, Singapore; Business Times; Prudential)