I received a message from my mother one night to ask me if we should sign up for a free Covid-19 insurance called GREAT Covid Care Plan by Great Eastern.
Source: WhatsApp Message My Mother Forwarded To Me
I already wrote an article discussing the signing up of free insurance earlier this year. After looking closer at the policy, I decided to dedicate this article to the Great Covid Care Plan by Great Eastern.
According to the website and the WhatsApp message, the GREAT Covid Care Plan is a complimentary plan with a 12-month coverage that gives you up to S$2,000 in the event you are hospitalised due to a COVID-19 infection.
Source: GREAT Covid Care Plan FAQ
To claim the S$200 a day benefit, you will need to meet various criteria below.
- Receive at least one dose of an approved Covid-19 vaccine
- Before being hospitalized due to Covid-19; and
- On and before 31 December 2021
- Hospitalized solely due to Covid-19 infection
This is NOT an insurance policy that covers
- Hospitalization from vaccination complications
- Hospitalization from Covid-19 without vaccination
GREAT Covid Care Plan is a policy that covers a very specific case. It is only when an individual gets hospitalized from the effects of Covid -19 AFTER vaccination.
The Odds Of Claiming Against GREAT Covid Care Plan
According to the latest information we have now, although vaccination does not 100% prevent Covid-19, there is some evidence that vaccination lowers the risk and severity of complications of Covid-19.
I cannot find specific statistics for Singapore so I will use the statistics from the United States.
Low Risk Of Vaccine Breakthrough Infections
According to the CDC in April 2021, out of the 75 million full vaccinated individuals, there are about 5,800 vaccine breakthrough cases.
Vaccine breakthrough cases are vaccinated individuals that get infected with Covid-19 even after getting vaccinated.
The number of vaccine breakthrough cases makes up less than 0.008% of the total vaccinated population.
Even Lower Risk Of Hospitalization Due To Vaccine Breakthrough Infections
This is what you are signing up for to be insured under the GREAT Covid Care Plan.
About 7% of recorded breakthrough cases resulted in hospitalization. Although this looks like a big number, if you combine it with the low odds of getting Covid-19 after vaccination, it computes to about 0.0005% which is 1 in 200,000.
Using the odds on Singapore’s fully vaccinated population, the total number of people that has a chance of claiming against this policy is about 11 out of over 2 million fully vaccinated individuals.
0.0005% x 2,172,015 = 10.9
Disclaimer: Singapore statistics might be different from the United States but my point is that hospitalizations from Covid-10 AFTER vaccinations is rare.
Obligatory Marketing Consent Clause
Think you are getting this insurance for free? Look at this marketing consent clause that you have to agree to before you submit your application.
Source: Great Eastern
You are giving them consent to reach out to give you “updates on relevant news, promotions and advice” via post, digital platforms (including social media), email, phone number-based messaging (e.g. SMS, WhatsApp, WeChat) and voice calls. Basically, the permission to contact you to sell you stuff.
In case if it is still not clear, they are providing you with a free insurance policy in exchange for the chance to advertise and sell to you other policies.
If you are already an existing client, you might already be receiving messages from your agent or Great Eastern directly so this might not affect you. However, if you have already withdrawn your consent, I believe that giving your consent again resets your permission for them to start sending you marketing messages again.
While it is true that you can withdraw your consent after signing up for it, personally, the value of this policy is so low that it is not worth even signing up for it.
Source: Great Eastern
If you really want to sign up for this policy, remember to withdraw your consent for them to contact you to send you marketing messages. You can do it here.
Use Of FOMO Tactics
Source: Great Eastern
They also employ FOMO tactics by highlighting in bold that the policy is only available for a limited time only.
Remember to always read through what you are signing up for and don’t rush into making a decision.
How Much Is The GREAT Covid Care Plan Worth?
So how low is this policy worth at the individual level?
After taking into account the odds and the maximum payout of S$2,000, on the individual level, we estimate that the policy is worth S$0.01.
0.0005% x S$2,000 = S$0.01
If you see a 1 cent coin on the floor, most people won’t even stop to pick it up. The risk of spraining your back is not worth the S$0.01.
You have to also take note that if you do not get hospitalized for the full ten days, the expected value of the policy is even lower.
In the T&Cs, if you get hospitalized multiple times, you will only be able to claim once.
What Is The Purpose Of An Insurance Policy?
First, it is to cover the costs of medical bills. Next, it is to cover any potential loss of income.
For the hospital bills, for Singaporeans, PR or long term pass holders, it is fully covered by the Singapore Government.
As for the potential loss of income, this is where policies such as GREAT Covid Care Plan can potentially be useful as insurance is the only alternative to getting a payout to indirectly compensate for the loss of income.
If you are salaried, your company should still payout your salary even if you are hospitalized. However, if you are paid by the hour, you will lose income. In this case, GREAT Covid Care Plan is useful by providing a token sum to cover some lost income.
GREAT Covid Care Plan is a policy that covers when an individual gets hospitalized from the effects of Covid -19 AFTER vaccination. The odds of this happening is 0.0005% which is 1 in 200,000 people.
You are providing marketing consent in exchange for a free insurance product that covers a specific case that occurs rarely.
The amount of benefits you will receive is extremely limited due to the rarity of the event. You are putting yourself in the way of multiple cold calls and marketing emails just for a policy that is estimated to be worth only S$0.01 to you.
Always read through what you are signing up for and not just sign up just because it is free. There is always a price to pay.
If you really want to sign up, remember to withdraw your marketing consent here.
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