These are very common seasonal diseases that threaten both children and adults in tropical Singapore.
“HFMD surge to near record highs – Straits Times 9th June, 2016”, write of how Singapore could be heading for one of its worst hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD) outbreaks.
“More than 30,000 dengue cases expected in Singapore this year – CNA 18th Feb, 2016”
Recent news headlines like these have left many concerned and worried, especially those with children in childcare centres and people living near dengue hot spots.
Having witnessed my children and even husband’s experience with HFMD, I know how painful and uncomfortable it can be. I remember how my husband developed hundreds of ulcers in his mouth – so painful that he couldn’t even swallow pureed porridge,..poor thing!
For working parents whose children are down with HFMD, there is also the headache of finding alternative care when their child can’t go to childcare or school.
The Financial Cost
Then there is the costly medical expenses of seeing a doctor, especially for pediatricians that can easily cost over $100/visit. Childcare centres do not allow the child to return to school without a doctor’s medical certificate, so that typically means at least 2 visits to the doctor.
Dengue fever can also chalk up a big bill because of the need for daily blood tests and review consultations. I recall a friend of mine was diagnosed with dengue fever last year and his bills came up to a total of $1200!
Depending on the severity of the condition, some cases may even require hospitalisation which would cost even more.
How can we mitigate the financial costs?
What if the condition is not serious enough to warrant a hospital stay but still incur a sizable treatment cost? One way to mitigate the outpatient costs is with a personal accident plan.
Nowadays there are comprehensive personal accident plans that can pay for the medical expenses of common accidents and illness including HFMD and dengue fever.
Such plans can also cover accidents that can happen to anyone in our daily lives, such as sprains, physical injuries and food poisoning etc.
For example, young children who are active and love climbing up and down can be susceptible to falls and injuries. Same with people who do a lot of sports and may sometimes injure themselves in the process. And recall the recent mass food poisoning incident from eating contaminated food at a food centre?
Personal accident plans can help to offset the costs of outpatient or specialist treatments, as well as alternative care like Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), accupuncture, chiropractor and physiotherapist.
What’s good about such personal accident plans:
- Practical coverage for common risks in day to day life
- Low cost and affordable coverage
- Easy to apply and premiums does not depend on age
- Worldwide 24 hr coverage
- Provides lump sum payout upon accidental death and/or disability (which pays out on top of whatever plans you currently have)
What to look out for when choosing a personal accident plan
- Type of coverage – does it provide medical reimbursement for minor incidents or does it only pay out upon accidental death or disability?
- Relevance of the coverage – it’s common for personal accident plans to be offered in packages with bundled benefits. However some may not be relevant for your life stage. For example, some plans include child support fund to cover for children’s living expenses in the event of the breadwinner’s accidental death or disability. Such coverage may not be relevant for someone who is single and has no children or dependents.
- Exclusions – personal accident plans usually exclude hazardous pursuits like skydiving, mountaineering and deep sea diving. So do take note of the exclusions to see if you are covered for your lifestyle and hobbies.
While we take precautionary measures e.g washing our children’s hands more often to avoid the spread of HFMD, and doing the 5 step mozzie wipeout to fight dengue etc, it’s prudent to also plan ahead to mitigate the financial impact should accidents happen. (just in case)
While we cannot predict accidents and illnesses, we can proactively manage the financial impact should it happen with the right insurance coverage.
To Your Success and Happiness,