Does a pregnancy via IVF enjoy the same coverage as a natural pregnancy? Here’s what you need to know and the plans around.
The forward planning required when having a child is not something to be taken lightly, especially not from a financial standpoint. Not only do you have to start sourcing for baby accessories, but you will also have to consider purchasing an insurance plan to safeguard both you and your child, months before they are born.
However, if your pregnancy was the success of an Assisted Reproduction Procedure, would the same insurance plans apply?
In this article, we look at what maternity insurance plans offer, whether pregnancies conceived by Assisted Reproduction Procedures are covered, and which plans are available on the Singapore market.
Pregnancy insurance for Assisted Reproduction Programmes (ARPs) in Singapore
Prior to 2019, the ARP insurance scheme helped to protect couples against the unexpected cost of neonatal care for babies conceived via IVF; by providing a cash benefit of S$150 or S$300 per day, should the baby be admitted to a Special Care Nursery or a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) .
However, as of 1 April 2019, with the introduction of MediShield Life, couples no longer needed to purchase ARP insurance before undergoing IVF, as MediShield Life provides coverage for serious pregnancy or delivery complications.
Even with the introduction of MediShield Life, insurers still offered products similar to ARP, and couples can still purchase additional maternity insurance plans should they want to increase their coverage beyond what’s provided by MediShield Life and MediSave .
What does MediShield Life cover for pregnant women?
A basic health insurance scheme that provides universal and lifelong protection against hefty healthcare costs, MediShield Life helps to pay for large hospital bills and selected costly outpatient treatments .
MediShield life covers for the inpatient treatment of serious pregnancy and delivery complications, such as pre-eclampsia, cervical incompetency and more . However, it does not cover for general maternity and fertility treatments as they are not for illnesses and thus fall outside the scope of MediShield Life .
Should the cost of fertility expenses be a concern, the Assisted Reproduction Treatment (ART) co-funding scheme can help couples to pay for Assisted Conception Procedures.
If you’ve been unsuccessful in trying to conceive, why not consider using TTC products such as the twoplus Sperm Guide, before tapping on Assisted Conception Procedures? The twoplus Sperm Guide is an affordable fertility product for men and women that boosts the odds of natural conception by helping more sperms reach the egg. More sperm near the cervix, more chances of conceiving!
What insurance do you need for fertility treatments in Singapore?
Besides relying on the coverage provided by MediShield Life, couples can purchase additional insurance for greater coverage and a peace of mind.
When it comes to fertility treatment and insurance, the type of insurance plan to look out for is maternity insurance — also commonly referred to as pregnancy insurance or prenatal insurance. Maternity insurance provides coverage for both expecting mothers and their child(ren).
Most saliently, if you’ve undergone fertility treatment to conceive, you will want to look for insurance plans that cover pregnancies by ARPs.
So, what does maternity insurance cover?
For the mother, it can provide coverage for:
- Pregnancy complications, such as eclampsia and pre-eclampsia
- Death or total and permanent disability benefit (TPD), where a lump sum payout will be given
- Hospitalisation benefit in the form of a daily cash benefit when hospitalised due to pregnancy complications
- Others (such as mental wellness benefits)
For the child, it can cover:
- Congenital illnesses (the exact number of congenital illness covered differs based on the plan)
- Death benefit
- Hospitalisation benefit in the form of a daily cash benefit when hospitalised due to congenital illnesses
- Outpatient benefit for phototherapy due to severe neonatal jaundice
However, it is important to note that there are exclusions made for some maternity insurance plans. For example, mothers expecting more than 2 foetuses, or babies conceived through IVF could be excluded from the coverage, or require higher premiums in order to be covered.
Do all maternity insurance plans cover conception by Assisted Conception Procedures?
No, not all maternity insurance plans will cover pregnancies by Assisted Conception Procedures like In-Vitro Fertilisation (IVF), Intrauterine Insemination (IUI), Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI) and Intracervical Insemination (ICI). Even if the insurance plan offers such coverage, it could come at an additional premium.
Hence, if you’re looking for an insurance plan that will cover for your fertility treatment, be sure to read the fine print thoroughly.
Best maternity insurance plans for pregnancies via fertility treatment
Here are 2 insurance plans that provide coverage for conception via Assisted Conception Procedures.
Manulife ReadyMummy: Best for basic, yet sufficient coverage
Manulife ReadyMummy is one of the few maternity insurance plans that state clearly upfront that pregnancy by Assisted Conception Procedures will be covered, including pregnancies by IVF, IUI and ICI. This is a nice touch for mums-to-be looking for the right insurance plan, compared to having to comb through the terms and conditions of each individual maternity policy product brochure.
However, do note that coverage for pregnancies by Assisted Conception Procedures come with an additional premium .
What the plan covers :
- Psychotherapy treatment at 10% of the sum insured.
- Covers the mother against 14 pregnancy complications, at 100% of sum insured.
- Covers the child against 24 congenital illnesses, at 100% of sum insured.
- Both mother and child receive a daily cash benefit of 1% of the sum insured for each day in the hospital (up to 30 days).
- Death coverage at 100% of sum insured for both mother and child.
- Outpatient phototherapy treatment benefit of 1% of sum insured for each day of rental of a phototherapy machine for the child (up to 10 days).
- Cost: Varies depending on your details. You will have to speak with a Manulife financial consultant to find out more.
- First of its kind to provide the mother with mental wellness support.
- Covers a wide range of pregnancy complications and congenital diseases.
- Covers only 1 biological child from ARTs without complications.
A 3-year plan, you can purchase Manulife ReadyMummy from as early as 13 weeks into the pregnancy. You also have the option to buy any eligible plan(s) offered by Manulife, with no health questions asked, within 90 days from the birth of your child.
Singlife MyMaternityPlan: Best for variety and multiple foetus cover
While there are some maternity insurance plans that only cover for 1 or 2 foetuses, Singlife MyMaternityPlan stands out by covering up to 4 babies in a single pregnancy, even for pregnancies via IVF, IUI, ICSI or ICI.
Compared to Manulife ReadyMummy, Singlife MyMaternityPlan covers fewer pregnancy complications and congenital illnesses. You also have to purchase a qualifying Singlife plan in order to be eligible to purchase the MyMaternityPlan.
What the plan covers :
- Covers 10 pregnancy complications, at 100% of sum insured.
- Covers 23 congenital illnesses, at 100% of sum insured.
- 1% of sum assured for each day of hospitalisation.
- Outpatient phototherapy treatment due to severe neonatal jaundice at 1% of sum assured for each day of rental of the phototherapy machine (up to 10 days).
- 50% sum assured for stem cell transplant surgery (one-time payout).
- 10% of sum assured if the insured child shows developmental delay (one-time payout).
- Death coverage at 100% of sum insured for both mother and child.
- Cost: S$638 one-time premium for S$10,000 coverage for a non-smoking female aged 30 years on their next birthday.
- Covers up to 4 babies in a single pregnancy, even for pregnancies via IVF, IUI, ICSI or ICI, subject to underwriting.
- Allows multiple claims for a wide range of conditions, for both mother and child.
- MyMaternityPlan can only be purchased when you or your spouse sign-up for any of the 18 qualifying plans. These plans are selected protection or savings plans.
You can apply for this plan as long as your pregnancy is within 13 to 36 weeks of pregnancy at the time of application. There are also no health check ups for your baby when you purchase a new whole life plan for them, within 90 days from the birth.
Apart from the 2 maternity plans listed above, you could also speak to your financial advisor to check if their insurance company offers any special maternity insurance plans. It could even come as an add-on to an existing plan.
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