Insurance should be the first “investment” in virtually any investment plan, because any major medical expenses could easily wipe out many years of hard-earned cost savings and investment benefits. However, insurance is usually not discussed just as much as investments because it is a boring and taboo subject. A common thinking among investors is to try to grow one’s wealth through investment quickly enough so that one doesn’t need insurance.

However, how many folks could ensure that we could grow wealthy before we grow old? A proper thought through insurance plan would go towards ensuring that we are well protected through the period when we’re still growing our wealth and are most vulnerable to any major expenses. However, sometimes, even the best-laid plans can be fallible when the first is not in the best of health. I have an exclusive “as-charged” Medishield plan (Plan B) that covers me for hospitalization in a Class B ward.

When I had been healthier and bought the insurance, I thought I’d stay in a Class B2 ward easily were to be hospitalized. I did so not buy any rider to protect the co-insurance and deductible servings of the medical bill, as I believe that medical insurance ought to be to cover large medical expenses.

Hence, the coverage of a Medishield Plan B was adequate — stay in B2 ward, covered up till B1 ward. I could not picture myself residing in a Class A or even a private medical center ward. The money saved from not residing in these more costly wards could be spent on a nice little holiday later. In fact, I have sometimes thought about staying in a Class C ward to save lots of more on the deductible and co-insurance portions.

Unfortunately, Man proposes, Heaven disposes. I’ve not been in the best of health in the last few years. This has exposed gaps in my thinking and a major risk in my medical care insurance coverage. I’ve seen specialists as a subsidized patient in a public medical center, private patient in a public medical center and private patient in an exclusive hospital. Needlessly to say, viewing the specialist as a subsidized patient is the least expensive, but normally it takes 1-2 months to make an appointment. Seeing as the exclusive patient costs more than as a subsidized patient, but the cost differential between an exclusive and open public hospital is not major.

The lead time for an appointment as a private patient in an open public hospital can range from 1/2 weeks to 3 weeks, day while an exclusive patient in a private hospital can see the specialist on a single. Hence, in my haste to seek medical attention, I have seen an exclusive specialist in a private hospital on the few occasions.

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This then exposes me to the chance to be hospitalized in an exclusive medical center ward. The Medishield Plan B that I have only addresses 50% of the insurable expenditures in an exclusive hospital ward, which is as good as devoid of any insurance. Could it be a full case to be penny-wise and pound-foolish in not buying the priciest Medishield plan?

I don’t believe so, because if this is the full case, I would not need upgrading for an “as-charged” Medishield plan. It is a case of not having the ability to foresee how I would act when I am not well. What will I now do? One option is to upgrade to a Medishield Plan P that covers private hospital wards, provided I am insurable still.

But honestly speaking, the annual rates of Plan P are not cheap. If this option is chosen, at some true time, I would downgrade to Plans A or B to control the premiums. Anyway, there are going to be changes to the plans with the introduction of Medishield Life. I will wait and see the benefits and monthly premiums of each Medishield plan before deciding.