Revealed: the real cost of a critical illness in Singapore and how protection can help

June 10, 2022

Over the years, you’ll have worked hard to build up wealth and provide a comfortable lifestyle for your loved ones. You’ve diligently saved money and made well-researched investments so you can reach your long-term goals.

However, no matter how hard you work to build a future for your loved ones, life can sometimes throw a curveball at you. If you unexpectedly fall sick with a serious illness, it could pose serious problems for your family’s finances.

A recent study of critically ill Singaporeans, published by Asia One, found that one in three people are forced to use up all or most of their savings on medical treatment.

If you want to avoid this prospect, it can be useful to seek financial protection. Read on to find out more about what this is, why you might need it, and how a planner can help you to protect yourself.

While Singapore boasts high-quality healthcare, it can be expensive too

As you’ll know, there are many good reasons to be proud of Singapore. Not only does it boast the highest quality of living in Asia, but also a renowned education system and one of the lowest crime rates in the world.

Of course, the flip side of a high standard of living can be a high cost of living, and Singapore is no exception. According to government figures, it’s the second most expensive city in the world to live in.

No matter how seriously you take your physical wellbeing, one major, and sometimes unavoidable, expense can be healthcare. While you’ll know that the quality of the treatment you receive is high, the cost usually is too.

This is especially true for critical illnesses, such as cancer or heart attacks. According to a recent report published in Asia One, critically ill patients in Singapore spend an average of $32,000 SGD on treatment while 15% of people spent $50,000 or more. Of course, the cost of treatment can increase significantly above these numbers into six or even seven figure sums.

The report also found a quarter of critically ill Singaporeans had to borrow money or even remortgage their homes to cover the cost of treatment.

Having protection in place can give you greater peace of mind

As you might imagine, having to pay such a large amount of money can pose a major problem. While paying for high-quality treatment is money well spent, the expense could seriously affect your quality of life or even your progress towards long-term goals.

For example, if you have to tighten your belt then you might find yourself reducing your retirement contributions, meaning you may not be able to achieve the lifestyle you want later on. While this may be a necessary saving, it could hinder your long-term prospects.

If this prospect concerns you, then seeking financial protection can help to give you greater peace of mind. Some of the most useful types of cover include:

Life insurance

If you were to pass away unexpectedly, could your loved ones be able to maintain their standard of living? Could they afford to remain in the family home? If not, this is where financial protection could help.

Life insurance provides your family with a lump-sum payout if you pass away during the term of the policy. There are several different types of life insurance to consider, from whole life to fixed term. Each has pros and cons, so it’s important to weigh up your choices before you act.

Having this protection in place can help you to rest easy, knowing that your loved ones won’t struggle financially, even if the worst were to happen.

Critical illness insurance

Could you afford to meet a bill for tens of thousands of dollars if you fell seriously ill? Would you be able to meet your monthly financial commitments if you need to take an extended period off work? If not, you may benefit from Critical illness insurance.

This type of protection gives you a lump sum if you’re diagnosed with one of a list of serious illnesses, such as serious forms of cancer, multiple sclerosis, or a stroke. You can then use that money to pay for medical treatment, adjust your home if you have a disability, or maintain your family’s standard of living if you’re unable to work.

Unlike life insurance, which only pays out when you die, critical illness insurance will pay a lump sum once you’ve been diagnosed with a condition covered under your policy.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that the illnesses covered tend to vary between insurers. This is why it’s important to check the terms of your policy, so you know what you’re protected against.

Seeking financial protection can be a useful way to safeguard your family’s wellbeing against any unexpected problems. If you aren’t sure which type of cover could be right for you, you may want to seek professional advice.

Working with a planner can help you to find the protection that suits your needs

While nobody likes to think about the possibility of falling ill, a good financial plan should prepare for unexpected issues. Having the right types of protection in place can enable you to overcome any bumps on the road, so you can work towards your goals with confidence.

If you aren’t sure which types of cover might be right for your needs, seeking professional advice can be very useful.

When you work with a financial planner, they can help to assess your life plans and help you to find the protection that would benefit you the most. This can help to give you peace of mind to know that you’ll be able to overcome any unexpected disruptions that the future may hold.

Get in touch

If you want to know more about how protection can help you to reach your long-term goals, we can help. Email us at or fill in our online contact form to organise a meeting and we’ll get in touch.