Singapore Notes, 5 Feb 2014
Since April 1984, the national medical savings scheme mandates that every employee contributes 7% - 9.5% (depending on age group) of his monthly salary to a personal Medisave account. Compulsory savings which are allowed to be withdrawn only to pay the hospital bills of the account holder and his immediate family members. Savings which are deducted from his own hard earned wages. Semantics aside, co-payment and Medisave mean the same thing - you pay your medical bills out of your own pockets.
When Gan said that, under the new Medishield Life scam, patients' share of big hospital bills will go down from what they have to pay now, what he means is that the Medisave portion is going up. This is confirmed by the next line, where he promises "Medisave contributions will have to go up at an opportune time". This is on top of what all of us, including Han Fook Kwang the Lee Kuan Yew apologist, experienced early this year when we were advised of the hike in Medishield premiums for existing coverage plans. This bears repeating: Medisave monies come from our own pockets. Not from the national budget allocated for public health or welfare. Full story