New mental health insurance, the first-ever in Singapore

Mental disorders are common and disabling.

Yuris Alhumaydy on Unsplash

AIA has just launched Singapore’s very first insurance plan that covers mental illness.

Named the AIA Beyond Critical Care plan, it covers five conditions — major depressive disorders (MDD), schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), Tourette syndrome.

This plan is groundbreaking considering one in seven Singaporeans experience mental health issues at least once in their life, based on the 2016 Singapore Mental Health Study.

The same study revealed that 3 out of 4 Singaporeans who experienced a mental health disorder do not seek treatment.

The policy will likely encourage people to seek professional help with its S$200 reimbursement for mental health screenings.

Ms Ho Lee Yen, AIA Singapore’s chief customer and marketing officer, has added that she hopes to balance provide the best protection for customers with the sustainability of their business.

There are many more unreported cases of mental health conditions due to the stigma around mental illnesses, which is why we want to tackle this and help people get the support they need.”

Claims for mental illness will be made under the “Mental Well-being Benefit Insured Amount” where the payout will be 20% of the coverage amount, capped at S$50,000 per claim, and S$150,000 for the total per life claims.

Throwing a Lifeline

Source: Nikko Macaspac

With the stresses of modern life, this insurance policy is a boon for everyday Singaporeans who don’t have access to adequate mental health support.

The notion of mental health issues is often considered still, a peripheral issue in most Asian cultures, sometimes even stigmatized.

This could be a big leap forward.

Are societal views changing to adopt an approach that doesn’t just acknowledge and accept, but wants to help those suffering from mental health issues?

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