“The Top 5 Regrets of Dying” – What is Yours?

In the face of mortality, many thoughts and emotions will fill the last days of your life. With little time left, one often think about regrets – and what you would do differently had you been given a second chance. Bronnie Ware is a palliative care nurse in Australia and the author of “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying – A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing” – and has shared some of her interactions with many patients who have just days to live. In her book and blog, she tells us what the 5 biggest regrets of the dying are.

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GIRO Payment is my Last Choice.

In May last year, some 22,000 Prudential customers suffered what was referred to as a “technical glitch” causing monies to be deducted in error from thousands of bank accounts. Even though the error was discovered and rectified within 24-hours, it clearly highlights the risk to the consumer in signing up for GIRO. Since many seniors grew up in the age of GIRO and have come to accept that as part of our normal financial life in Singapore, I think it is time we give GIRO a hard look. With all the payment systems available today, GIRO would be at the bottom of my list! Here’s why.

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New Artificial Intelligence(AI) Tech Helps Senior Caregivers Provide Higher Level of Care

You cannot buy it today and it is not yet available in any nursing or elderly facility in Singapore. The new technology is developed by CarePredict, a Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based startup aimed at improving seniors’ quality of life with machine learning-driven wearables and is being tested today in senior living facilities in the USA. They plan to officially launch sometime this year but it is unclear when CarePredict will it be available in Singapore.

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Healthcare Costs is Rising in Singapore Faster Than GDP Growth: How Will This Affect You?

Last month, the PM sounded an alarm that is not entirely unexpected – that as Singapore ages, healthcare cost is bound to increase and hit levels of spending that will continue to break historical records. The Singapore government’s healthcare expenditure has skyrocketed from $3.9 billion in 2011 to an estimated $10.2 billion in 2018 — this means that in 2019, Singapore’s healthcare expenditure would be triple the amount spent in 2011! The PM made it loud and clear that this is not sustainable and Singapore needs to look for new ways to manage and fund the rising healthcare costs – which is only going to get worse at an even faster rate by 2030, where 1-in-4 will be over 65!

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Even if You Have CPF Life at 65, You May Need an Additional $215K to Retire.

How much you need at 65 to retire depends on many factors and is different for everyone. A good starting point in Singapore is to look at someone at 65 who will be receiving CPF Life Full Retirement Scheme payout of about $1350 per month. Working on the assumption that you have your HDB unit paid off and are not carrying any debt, do not own a car, in good health and does not have any significant balances in other CPF accounts – how much do you need to set aside to retire reasonable comfortably in Singapore? Let’s make the assumption that you will need enough money to take you to 90 years-old or 25-years past your retirement at 65. Statistically, you may live longer than that, and that is why we also factored in a contingency or emergency fund as well.

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For Government Hospitals, How You Are Referred Will Determine How Much You Pay!

For Singaporeans or PRs using the public healthcare system in the Restructured Hospitals, how you are classified in the system – private or subsidised patient – will result in a big difference in your out-of-pocket costs. If you are admitted to a public healthcare system like Khoo Teck Puat Hospital how you are referred during your first consultation matters — and will determine your classification until you are discharged. Remember, once it is in the system, it is normally not possible to change! The classification is not related to any “means testing” or whether you are rich or poor, but how you enter the system. Here is what you must do to be classified in the system as subsidised patient.

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Why Do I Pay More for Brand Name Drugs in Singapore?

Yes, that is true – Singaporeans, in many cases, do have to pay more for their brand name vs generics drugs compared to other countries in the region, like Malaysia. The savings could range from 30% to even 50%. To be clear, these are not fakes or generics but the exact same drugs marketed by the same global pharmaceutical companies. If you are taking such drugs for chronic conditions like high blood pressure or diabetes, the savings over a year can be quite substantial. So why are Singaporean “punished” with higher drug prices? Here are some of the possible reasons.

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Know your Cards: Credit vs Debit vs Prepaid vs ATM Card

Seniors often complain that when they retire, they find it difficult to get a credit card approved and would often have to settle for other forms of cards. Not all cards with a Visa or Mastercard logo works the same way and there are big differences. Different cards also offer different protection in the event your card is stolen or if there are fraudulent charges. Here is what every senior should know about the cards in their wallet!

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In 2021, Seniors should upgrade Eldershield to Careshield Life – here is why.

There are three legs of healthcare insurance that seniors should pay attention to. The first is acute care insurance – Medishield Life – that helps you with serious condition and treatment that normally require hospitalisation. Medisave and other government subsidies are intended to cover primary care that includes anything from cough and cold to management of chronic conditions like diabetes. The third leg is long term care for when you are severely disabled and need long term help for day-to-day living — this is where the current Eldershield 400 and the yet to be launched Careshield Life will be something you want to have.

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Merdeka Generation Package: S$8 Billion well spent to help seniors born in the 50’s

Like the Pioneer Generation Package, I believe the Merdeka Generation Pack(MGP) is money well spent. When the Merdeka Generation citizens were in their working years, wages and salaries were significantly lower then. Education and other opportunities were considerably less than what our current generation has. For them, there was little opportunity to save enough for retirement especially with healthcare costs increasing at an alarming rate. Add this to greater longevity, it is clear that the Merdeka Generation’s savings for their retirement will fall short of what is needed.

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