ICMIF member NTUC Income (Income) in Singapore has announced the expansion of the Income Family Micro-Insurance Scheme (IFMIS) to include eligible low-income families with a child or ward who is studying in a local secondary school, certain specialised schools or a pre-university institution and receiving assistance under the Ministry of Education Financial Assistance Scheme (MOE FAS), with effect from 1 September 2020. The expansion will cover over 22,000 more eligible students under IFMIS, bringing the total number covered to over 52,000.
Currently, IFMIS offers insurance protection, at no premium, to more than 30,000 eligible students, who are in local primary schools and are MOE FAS recipients. The IFMIS also covers eligible children who are enrolled in NTUC First Campus’ My First Skool.
In the unfortunate event of death or total and permanent disability (TPD) of the eligible child’s parent or guardian, IFMIS pays out SGD 5,000 upon approval of the claim. To date, IFMIS has disbursed close to SGD 1.5 million in claims to close to 280 families.
As COVID-19 can lead to hospitalisation and loss of income for a prolonged duration, low-income families are likely to be most adversely affected. Therefore, since 17 February 2020, IFMIS has extended its insurance coverage to include COVID-19 benefits, such as providing financial support to help eligible students and their families tide over this difficult period should the need arise. The extended coverage provides a cash pay-out of SGD 200 for each day of hospitalisation in a public hospital in Singapore due to COVID-19, for up to 30 days. The claim is payable starting from the first day of diagnosis of COVID-19.
Given that the pandemic situation remains fluid and uncertain, the COVID-19 benefits, which were slated to end on 31 August, will be extended from 1 September until 31 December 2020, to offer a greater peace of mind to those in need. The benefits will cover all students who are eligible for IFMIS, including those who are new to the Scheme.
Income’s Chief Executive, Andrew Yeo, said, “Families from low-income backgrounds are often the hardest hit when a parent or guardian of children and youths, becomes seriously ill, suffers a permanent disability or dies. This is especially so when the parent or guardian is the sole breadwinner of the family. Given such trying circumstances, these school-going children and youths may have to drop out of school due to the financial challenges that they face. Income champions education for youth-in-need as we believe education levels the playing field for all and is an effective driver for social mobility. Thus, by expanding IFMIS to protect more eligible students, Income is stepping up to offer tangible support to families who are the most vulnerable amongst us in these challenging times.”
“In this climate where every dollar matters, we hope that the extension of COVID-19 benefits can help these families weather the storm, when required. It is our social remit to make insurance accessible to people in Singapore, including those who are underserved or unserved. During this pandemic period, it has become more important to us that we help people in Singapore be insured and stay protected. With the expansion of IFMIS and the extension of COVID-19 benefits to the Scheme, we are glad to be able to stand behind the community and continue to drive positive social impact in Singapore.”
Mr Clarence Tang, Divisional Director of Finance and Procurement Division, MOE, said: “We are pleased that Income has extended premium-free IFMIS coverage beyond FAS recipients in primary schools, to include support for such students in our secondary schools, specialised schools and pre-university institutions. MOE is glad to continue this partnership with Income to widen our support for needy students and their families.”
To find out more about IFMISS, please visit www.income.com.sg/IFMIS.