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Health in the time of Corona: does Personal Accident cover COVID-19?

Personal accident insurance has to be the most underrated insurance product in the market. It requires no medical underwriting – useful for anyone with pre-existing conditions or the elderly – it’s affordable (sometimes as low as $0.30 a day) and it bundles a bunch of extras not often found in other policies. While there are crossover benefits between Personal Accident, Travel, Hospitalisation policies (e.g. hospital cash, outpatient and inpatient allowance, ambulance allowance etc…) adding the right plan can extend your safety net.

One of the latest inclusions to Personal Accident insurance plans is infectious diseases (inclusive of COVID-19, Dengue, Zika, Hand Foot and Mouth disease) coverage. Two plans in particular (FWD and Etiqa) provide COVID-19 benefits beyond testing and hospitalisation covered by the government for citizens, permanent residents and long-term pass holders.

FWD’s personal accident insurance reduces waiting period

FWD’s Personal Accident insurance benefits start from the get-go. Unlike the usual 90 days waiting period for infectious diseases claims, they’ve reduced it to just 15 days. Also, the accident and infectious disease benefits (and optional riders) are generous:

  • Inpatient and outpatient care from $7,500-$15,000
  • Daily hospital income from $100-$500 for up to 365 days
  • Weekly income benefit for temporary total disability (up to 104 weeks)
  • Taxi allowance of $100 daily for 2 weeks after being hospitalised for 5 days or more
  • Up to $500,000 coverage for death caused by accident or an infectious disease

Etiqa’s ePROTECT safety plan provides coverage for 22 common infectious diseases

Etiqa’s ePROTECT safety plan similarly offers adequate COVID-19 and infectious disease coverage and for as little as $18 a month. Highlights of the plan include:

  • 22 common Infectious Diseases like Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease, Dengue and H1N1 are underwritten covered.
  • Knowing the financial strain falling ill with COVID-19 and Dengue can cause, policyholders are extended a $3,000 benefit each for COVID-19 and Dengue upon proof of diagnosis. So in the unfortunate event, you’ve contracted both diseases, you’ll be entitled to $6,000.
  • Up to $500,000 protection for Accidental Death or Permanent Disability and an ambulance claimable fee of $200.
  • Home or Office Modification allowance of between $1,000-$5,000 depending on the plan chosen.

Beyond these two plans, other insurer’s policies warrant a second look as their inclusions may fit your personal use case.

Aviva Personal Accident Insurance provides payouts by PayNow

Convenience is something to consider when it comes to the claim and coverage process. This plan handles payouts by PayNow and provides free child cover. Married couples also receive 10% off premiums, an added incentive to sign up together. Then there’s the TCM or Chiropractor therapy/treatment per accident claim allowance of $500-$1,000, which is more generous than most. Another feature to note is the Personal Liability Insurance – handy for those who drive or ride a motorcycle – where limits of $100,000-$300,000 are extended so you won’t be financially ruined if you cause an accident.

MSIG Protection Plus covers temporary injury

Hospitalisation insurance typically covers Permanent Disability but what happens if the injury is severe enough to cause a temporary injury that renders one unable to work? MSIG’s Protection Plus pays out up to S$250,000. Their extensive injury coverage provides for motorcyclists (rider or pillion rider), accidents occurred during reservist training and leisure sports like snorkelling, wakeboarding and bungee-jumping. Another highlight to note is the bereavement grant of up to $10,000, which should be a consideration for sole breadwinners.

ERGO Accident Protect covers infectious diseases, as well as miscarriages due to accident

While this plan does not cover for COVID-19, it does include 20 other Infectious Diseases including Dengue Fever, Hand Foot Mouth Disease as well as H1N1, Mumps, Rubella and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). For most, the base plan will suffice but there are two affordable Add-On covers (from $19 and $38 per month), which includes a lump sum Compassionate Allowance of $5,000-$25,000, Child Support Cover of $10,000-$25,000, Income Protection of 6 months salary (limited to $30,000) and Emergency Medical Evacuation with a 20,000-$50,000 limit – all inclusions you don’t want to be caught without. Another benefit to note also is its coverage of miscarriages due to accident and injuries sustained during reservist training.

AIG Sapphire Enhanced provides critical illness coverage

This plan’s Add-On is worth noting just for its Critical Illness coverage. While the payout isn’t massive (at $40,000-$80,000) it does include major cancers, heart attacks, end-stage kidney failure, bypass surgery and strokes – but only 90 days after the plan’s effective date. Other interesting riders to note are its Pet Care ($50 per day up till $750), reimbursement for cancelled event tickets due to hospitalisation and a $25,000 one-off payment to your loved ones in the event of accidental death. There’s also a Lifestyle Maintenance benefit of $5,000-$25,000 in the event of death 12 months from the date of the accident so the financial strain on your loved ones will be lessened.

Great Eastern AccidentCare Plus II extends extra 20% benefit to women

Appealing to the fairer sex, this PA plan extends an additional 20% to women on the Hospitalisation benefit and the sum assured for Accidental Death and Permanent Disablement. Motorcyclists will also find this plan appealing, full benefits are available for an additional 15% on the standard premium of each occupational class. Then there’s the free 12-month Dengue Care for individuals and their family you and the family, as well as overseas evacuation expenses upon accidental injury, and repatriation costs of up to $50,000.

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