NTUC Income recently launched a new maternity insurance plan called maternity 360 that is a standalone plan (IE doesn’t require a purchase of another insurance plan). This is a comprehensive insurance solution for pregnant mothers-to-be. There is always a risk in the delivery process and there is no way to guarantee good health for your newborn.
Your private integrated shield plan largely excludes bills related to the delivery (barring a few specified conditions).The previous only other similar offering is by Great Eastern (GE) called Flexi Maternity. While both GE and NTUC plans have coverage for $5,000 and $10,000 sum assured, there are differences in the plans for you to consider.
So what are the differences in coverage between the NTUC Maternity 360 and GE Flexi Maternity plan?
1. Benefit For Mother: Additional items of pregnancy complications with NTUC Maternity 360
NTUC Maternity 360 covers a total of 10 pregnancy complication conditions (2 new items). From medical sources, the additional coverage of Ectopic pregnancy will be useful. It is a common occurrence (about 1% of all pregnancies) and can be detected early. This benefit is not found in the GE Flexi Maternity plan.
10 types of pregnancy complications covered
2. Benefit For Child: Additional items of child congenital illnesses covered with NTUC Maternity 360 (5 new ones!)
This is currently the widest coverage of all insurers for congenital illnesses with 23 types of congenital illnesses. There are 5 more items covered vs the GE Flexi Maternity Plan. Pre-term babies have a higher risk of conditions such as Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) that can have significant physiological effects.
23 types of congenital illnesses covered
3. Benefit For Child: Additional outpatient phototherapy with NTUC Maternity 360
This is a unique benefit to this plan and may be useful. Jaundice is common in Asian babies and severe Jaundice may require phototherapy. This benefit is valid until 30 days after birth and for 10 days payable at 1% of sum assured per day (if you are on the $5,000 benefit plan it works out to be $50/day).
4. Benefit For Mother: NTUC Maternity 360 covers 8 conditions for hospital care benefits (In addition to their 10 pregnancy complication coverage)
Tears are more common in women having their first vaginal birth and range from small nicks and abrasions to deep lacerations affecting several pelvic floor muscles. Definition of a fourth-degree perineal tear: It goes through the anal sphincter and the tissue underneath it. The plan has a coverage for it. For caesarian section, there is a wound on the mother and this brings risk such as a surgical site infection. The plan has a coverage for it. If the mother suffers from any of the conditions mentioned or the other 6 listed below, there will be a payout of 1% of sum assured per day. If you are on the $5,000 benefit plan, it works out to be $50/day (payout subjected to a max of 30 days or $1,500).
Hospital care benefit for mother
Under the GE Flexi Maternity plan, the daily hospital care benefit is for their 8 listed pregnancy complication instead (which you will also claim your sum assured). Do note that to qualify for hospital care benefit, the hospitalization must be in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) or High Dependency Unit (HDU) of a hospital in Singapore. There is a cap of 30 days which amounts to $3,000 for the Essential plan and $6,000 for the Enhanced plan.
5. Benefit for Child: GE Flexi Maternity pays a higher hospital care benefit for child
The conditions covered are the same and is listed below. This hospital care benefit for the child is extremely useful in my opinion. I had a friend whose preterm baby had to be in NICU for 3 weeks and it cost her quite a lot of money. The NTUC Maternity 360 will pay 1% of sum assured per day which works out to be $50/day if you are on the $5,000 benefits plan. On the other hand, the GE Flexi Maternity Plan pays a higher daily Hospital Care benefit of $100 (Essential plan) or $200 (Enhanced Plan). Both plans pay up to a maximum period of 30 days per Policy Term.
Question: Is neonatal ward level 1 (which is general neonatal care ward) covered? NO
Hospital care benefit for child
6. GE Flexi Maternity guarantees you an option to purchase life insurance but NTUC still requires a simplified application
For the NTUC Income Maternity 360, there is an option that allows you to purchase life insurance coverage for your baby after delivery with a simplified application.
From the way the policy wordings,“After the birth of the insured child, the insured mother may choose to take up a new policy offered by us under this benefit, for the insured child based on a simplified health declaration. We will decide the type of new policy to be offered and all the following conditions must be met.”
However, the option to purchase life insurance coverage of up to $150,000 for your baby is guaranteed by GE Flexi Maternity. Within 90 days of your Newborn’s birth, there is no need for medical underwriting at the point of exercising the option.
7. For mothers who conceived through IVF
The GE Flexi Maternity plan is unfortunately not available. You may cover with NTUC Maternity 360 or explore maternity plans by AIA and AXA (which require the purchase of an additional life insurance policy).
Premium comparison table for these 2 plans (First in Singapore!)
The GE plan may seem more expensive but there is a free GE premium voucher worth $108 that you can use to offset a future whole life plan/endowment plan/ILP plan/total health plan premiums (Note: Voucher must be used within 12months of the GE Flexi Maternity issuance date). Coverage is also different as highlighted throughout the blog post.
Last recommendations Both these plans have their strengths and weaknesses. Premium should not be the ultimate consideration and you can explore maternity plans with AIA/AXA/PRU to suit your maternity coverage needs also. The earliest you can purchase either of these maternity insurances is 13 weeks and it is best for you to apply early! If either you or your child is diagnosed with medical conditions &/or treated for medical symptoms, it could jeopardize the chances of securing these plans.