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  • 1. What is ElderFund?

    ElderFund is a new discretionary assistance scheme, officially launched in end Jan 2020. It is targeted at assisting severely disabled lower-income Singapore Citizens aged 30 and above, who are not able to benefit from CareShield Life, ElderShield and Interim Disability Assistance Programme for the Elderly (IDAPE), and have low MediSave balances and inadequate personal savings to meet their long-term care needs.

    Eligible Singapore Citizens can receive up to $250 in monthly cash payouts for as long as they remain severely disabled. 

    2. What are the detailed ElderFund eligibility criteria?

    The Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) will assess your eligibility for ElderFund based on the following criteria:

    1. Unable to perform at least three out of six Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). The ADLs include eating, bathing, dressing, transferring, toileting, and walking or and moving around.
    2. Age 30 years old and above
    3. Must be a Singapore Citizen residing in Singapore
    4. Not eligible for CareShield Life, ElderShield and IDAPE, or no longer an active recipient of ElderShield and IDAPE

    AIC will also assess your financial eligibility based on this guiding set of financial criteria:
    1. Applicants should generally have low MediSave balances of less than $10,000
    2. Applicants should generally have low per capita household income that is equal or less than $1,200 per month

    Applications and appeals by Singaporeans who do not meet these criteria will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

    If you have difficulty meeting your long-term care needs, you should approach a medical social worker at your long-term care provider, or the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) for more advice and assistance. 

    3. Will the ElderFund payouts rise over time, like CareShield Life payouts?

    The regular increase in payouts for CareShield Life are supported by regular premium increases. Once an insuredunder CareShield Life makes a claim, the payout stays fixed.

    ElderFund will be a government financial assistance scheme, funded through taxes. Eligible Singapore Citizens can receive up to $250 per month in cash. There will be no cap on payout duration for the duration of their severe disability.. The Government will review the payout amount over time to ensure that payouts remain relevant for beneficiaries.

    4. If I have IDAPE/ ESH 300/ ESH 400/ CareShield Life/ Supplements or I am able to withdraw under MediSave Care, can I still qualify for ElderFund payouts?

    The target group for ElderFund recipients are Singapore Citizens who are not eligible for CareShield Life, ElderShield and IDAPE, or are no longer active recipients of ElderShield and IDAPE. Our focus is also on benefitting Singapore Citizens who have low MediSave balances, which means that the amount that they are able to draw under MediSave Care will not be the full withdrawal limit of $200/month. 

    However, Singaporeans who are unable to meet their long-term care costs, even after receiving payouts under ElderShield/CareShield Life, MediSave Care (from himself or his spouse) or IDAPE, may be considered for ElderFund on a case-by-case basis.

    If you have challenges meeting your long-term care needs, you should approach a medical social worker at your long-term care provider, or the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) for more advice and assistance.

    5. If I do not have enough MediSave balance, but am able to draw from my spouse's MediSave for MediSave Care, can I still qualify for ElderFund?

    ElderFund is a discretionary assistance scheme targeted at assisting severely disabled lower-income Singaporeans aged 30 and above who are not able to join CareShield Life, or have low MediSave balances and inadequate personal savings to meet their long-term care needs.

    If you are unable to meet your long-term care costs, even after receiving payouts under ElderShield/CareShield Life, MediSave Care or IDAPE, you may be considered for ElderFund on a case-by-case basis.

    If you have challenges meeting your long-term care needs, you should approach the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC), or a medical social worker at your long-term care provider, for more advice and assistance.
     

    6. I am below 30 and severely disabled. Why can't I receive ElderFund now since I do not qualify for CareShield Life yet?

    The focus of ElderFund is to provide protection against severe disability during old age, when Singaporeans are most likely to need long-term care.

    You can tap on various other support schemes meant for families who need support for their severely disabled loved ones younger than 30, e.g. subsidies for early intervention programmes under Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), and subsidies for therapy services at KK Hospital and the National University Hospital.

    Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund or ComCare can provide further assistance if you are unable to pay for your care even after Government subsidies and other means of support.

    7. Will Singapore Permanent Residents be eligible for ElderFund?

    The focus of ElderFund is to provide support for Singapore Citizens living in Singapore. Singapore Permanent Residents will not be eligible for ElderFund.

    8. Do Singaporeans residing overseas qualify for ElderFund payouts?

    The focus of ElderFund is to provide support for Singapore Citizens living in Singapore. Singaporeans residing overseas will not qualify for ElderFund payouts.

    9. Is there a periodic disability re-assessment for ElderFund?

    Annual periodic re-assessments may be required to assess if a beneficiary of a severe disability scheme continues to meet the criteria for receiving payouts/withdrawals. The periodic re-assessment fees are waived, regardless of the outcome of the assessment.  AIC will inform you if a periodic re-assessment is required.

    10. How is ElderFund different from Interim Disability Assistance Programme for the Elderly (IDAPE) and Pioneer Generation Disability Assistance Scheme (PG-DAS)?

    Interim Disability Assistance Programme for the Elderly (IDAPE) and Pioneer Disability Assistance Scheme (PioneerDAS) are disability assistance schemes restricted to smaller cohorts of older Singaporeans. ElderFund provides wider coverage, and is targeted at assisting lower-income Singapore Citizens above the age of 30 who are unable to benefit from CareShield Life, ElderShield and IDAPE, and have insufficient MediSave balances to support their basic long-term care needs.

    IDAPE was introduced in 2002 to benefit seniors who were not eligible for ElderShield at the time because they were aged 70 and above (born on/ or before 30 September 1932) or had pre-existing disabilities. It provides $250 per month or $150 per month, depending on applicant's per capita household income, for a maximum of 6 years.

    PioneerDAS is part of the Pioneer Generation package, and provides $100 per month for all moderately disabled Pioneers. There is no cap on the duration of payouts as long as they meet the eligibility criteria.

    11. If I am a severely disabled person in need, who should I go to for help?

    If you are unable to meet your long-term care needs after available Government subsidies and assistance schemes, including ElderFund, you can rely on MediFund and ComCare as a safety net.

    If you have challenges meeting your long-term care needs, you should approach the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC), or a medical social worker at your long-term care provider, for more advice and assistance. Alternatively, if you are already being assisted with ComCare from the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) / Social Services Offices (SSOs) and need further help with your long-term care costs, please approach your SSO for advice and assistance.

    MOH and MSF will work closely together to ensure that Singaporeans who need financial assistance do not need to undergo unnecessary hurdles in seeking assistance for their healthcare, long-term care and daily living expenses.

    12. I am an Interim Disability Assistance Programme for the Elderly (IDAPE) beneficiary but I am reaching the end of the 6-year payout period. Can my payout duration be extended?

    IDAPE was introduced as a complementary scheme to ElderShield in 2002, for Singaporeans who could not join the ElderShield scheme then. Similar to the current ElderShield schemes, a payout duration cap was built into the IDAPE scheme.

    Severely disabled Singaporeans who have finished their IDAPE payouts can continue to tap on means-tested Government subsidies and various Government assistance schemes to complement their personal savings and family support, in meeting their long-term care needs. They can also tap on government disability schemes like Home Caregiving Grant or ElderFund.

    Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund and ComCare can provide further assistance to Singaporeans who are unable to pay for their care even after Government subsidies and other means of support.

    Singaporeans who have challenges meeting their long-term care needs should approach a medical social worker at their long-term care provider, or the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) for more advice and assistance.

    13. I was not able to join ElderShield in 2002, and am not severely disabled now. If I join CareShield Life, can I qualify for IDAPE if I become severely disabled later on?

    More details on whether you can qualify for IDAPE if you become severely disabled in future will be released closer to the implementation of CareShield Life.

    14. Who administers ElderFund?

    The Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) administers ElderFund.

    15. How is ElderFund different from MediFund or ComCare?

    ElderFund is a discretionary assistance scheme, targeted at lower-income Singapore Citizens who are severely disabled, while MediFund is mainly to help patients who are unable to cope with medical bills (including those who are disabled or severely disabled), and ComCare is mainly to provide social assistance to low-income individuals or families.

    Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund and ComCare will provide assistance to Singaporeans who are unable to pay for their care even after Government subsidies and other means of support.

    If you have challenges meeting your long-term care needs, you should approach a medical social worker at your long-term care provider, or the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) for more advice and assistance. Alternatively, if you are already being assisted by a social worker from the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) with your daily living expenses, you may also seek help from your current social worker for your long-term care costs.

    MOH and MSF will work closely together to ensure that Singaporeans who need financial assistance do not need to undergo unnecessary hurdles in seeking assistance for their healthcare, long-term care and daily living expenses. 

    16. How will MOH/AIC reach out to potential beneficiaries who may not know about ElderFund?

    Information on ElderFund benefits, eligibility criteria and application details will be made available on AIC's one-stop online portal on the AIC website. We will also be engaging potential beneficiaries via various platforms they may come into contact with, including AIC Links, Medical Social Workers (MSWs) and long-term care service providers. In addition, the Silver Generation Office will also proactively refer individuals who may be eligible for ElderFund to AIC for further assistance.

    17. What support is available for me if I am severely disabled prior to age 30 (i.e. not eligible for ElderFund due to age)?

    There are various support schemes for families who need support for their severely disabled loved ones who are younger than 30 years old, e.g. subsidies for early intervention programmes under Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), and subsidies for therapy services at KK Hospital and the National University Hospital.

    Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund and ComCare will provide assistance to Singaporeans who are unable to pay for their care even after Government subsidies and other means of support. 

    18. What if I am mildly/moderately disabled – what help is available for my long term care costs?

    The focus of ElderFund is to provide protection against severe disability during old age, when Singaporeans are most likely to need long-term care but were not able to join CareShield Life or ElderShield, and have low income and MediSave balances and inadequate personal savings to meet their long-term care needs.

    There are various support schemes for families who need support for their severely disabled loved ones who are younger than 30 years old, e.g. subsidies for early intervention programmes under Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), and subsidies for therapy services at KK Hospital and the National University Hospital.

    Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund and ComCare will provide assistance to Singaporeans who are unable to pay for their care even after Government subsidies and other means of support. 

    19. If I am a beneficiary of other financial assistance schemes, will I be automatically included for ElderFund if I am severely disabled?

    ElderFund has stringent financial criteria, as it is intended to act as a safety net, for needy Singaporeans who require financial assistance to pay for their out-of-pocket costs for long-term care. It is also designed to be discretionary, to provide flexibility in accommodating various financial circumstances. As such, if you wish to receive ElderFund payout, you will need to submit an application for ElderFund, to facilitate a holistic assessment of your eligibility for ElderFund.

    20. Will I automatically qualify for ElderFund if I am a recipient of moderate disability assistance schemes such as Pioneer Generation Disability Assistance Scheme or Home Caregiving Grant?

    For Pioneer Generation Disability Assistance Scheme (PioneerDAS) and Home Caregiving Grant (HCG), which are moderate disability schemes, individuals can be eligible as long as they require some assistance with 3 or more Activities of Daily Living (ADLs).

    For ElderFund, which is a severe disability scheme, individuals need to be unable to perform 3 or more ADLs (i.e. require significant assistance) in order to be eligible.

    As the ElderFund eligibility criteria is stricter, patients who are eligible for ElderFund can automatically receive PioneerDAS or HCG payouts without going for a separate assessment (subject to meeting the other non-disability eligibility criteria for these schemes), but not the converse.

    21. How do I know whether I am severely disabled?

    You would need to visit a MOH-accredited severe disability assessor to be assessed whether you are severely disabled. You are likely to be assessed as severely disabled if you are unable to perform at least three activities of daily living (ADLs). These ADLs are bathing, dressing, feeding oneself, using the toilet, moving around and transferring.

    For example, at least three of the following scenarios apply to you:
    •You may need to rely entirely on your caregiver to be fed
    •You may need to be bathed entirely by your caregiver
    •You may need to rely entirely on your caregiver to manage your diapers or catheter
    •You may need to rely entirely on your caregiver to be dressed
    •You need to rely entirely on caregiver to move over a distance, e.g. cannot walk on one’s own or push oneself in a wheelchair
    •You need to be fully supported when being transferred from bed to chair, or chair to bed

    You will be reimbursed fully for the assessment fee if you are assessed to be severely disabled. If you are assessed to have mild/ moderate disability, you may still be eligible for mild/ moderate disability assistance schemes like the Home Caregiving Grant and FDW Levy Concession.

    For information on the different levels of disability and how to apply for ElderFund and other disability schemes you may be eligible for, please refer to the AIC website.

    22. If I am a recipient of the Home Caregiving Grant, am I still be eligible for ElderFund?

    Recipients of the Home Caregiving Grant can still be eligible for ElderFund.

    23. If my ElderFund payout ceased due to recovery, can I subsequently reapply if I become severely disabled again?

    You can reapply and receive ElderFund payouts again if assessed to meet the severe disability and all other eligibility criteria.

    24. Am I eligible for ElderFund if I am living in a nursing home?

    Whether you are eligible for ElderFund is determined by your financial assessment, disability assessment and other ElderFund criteria. Singaporeans who are living in nursing homes will similarly be assessed for ElderFund based on the ElderFund criteria. Those who meet the ElderFund criteria will receive ElderFund payouts.

    25. How do I apply for ElderFund?

    To apply for ElderFund, please submit an application via AIC eServices for Financing Schemes (eFASS) Application Portal using your own SingPass, and arrange for a disability assessment by a MOH-accredited severe disability assessor to obtain an Assessor's Statement. The assessor will submit the assessment results to AIC directly.

    Those who are staying in a nursing home can approach their nursing home for assistance to submit the Resident's Assessment Form in place of the severe disability assessment.

    More details on ElderFund can be found on AIC website. The list of MOH-accredited severe disability assessors can be found here.
     

    26. How long does it take for my ElderFund application to be processed, approved and for me to get the payout?

    Generally, your ElderFund application will be processed within two months from the date of receipt of the completed application. If the application outcome is not received after 2 months, you may reach out to the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) through the AIC website or AIC hotline (1800-650-6060) to enquire about the status.

    The payout will be made to your nominated bank account in the following month from the application's approval date. Payouts will be backdated to when the disability assessment was performed.
     

    27. Can I see my own doctor or therapist to be assessed for ElderFund eligibility?

    Severely disabled individuals who wish to apply for ElderFund will need to undergo a severe disability assessment by a MOH-accredited severe disability assessor. A trained, accredited severe disability assessor will be able to assess whether the applicant meets the ElderFund criteria of being unable to perform three or more of the six Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). We have expanded the list of accredited assessors to include therapists and nurses who have been trained.

    All MOH-accredited assessors have undergone a rigorous training programme to learn how to assess a Patient’s level of disability. Through the training, assessors are equipped to assess an individual’s ability to perform the six ADLs, including specific components of each ADL to take into account, what factors to consider when an individual is cognitively impaired, and what should be done if any individual’s functional ability fluctuates over time. As this is a complex process, the training and accreditation is necessary to ensure that disability assessments are conducted with a high degree of rigour and consistency.

    The Government is also looking into recognising equivalent assessments that have been performed by a qualified healthcare professional (doctor, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, and registered nurses) providing care to the patient. In such cases, the patient need not undergo a separate severe disability assessment. Today, those who are staying in a nursing home can already approach their nursing home for assistance to submit the Resident's Assessment Form in place of the severe disability assessment.

    MOH and AIC will progressively roll out the use of such equivalent assessments and will make the information available via MOH and AIC website.

    28. Where can I find the list of accredited assessors for ElderFund?

    The lists of MOH-accredited severe disability assessors can be found at the AIC’s website.

    29. Do I need to pay for the assessment for ElderFund?

    For disability assessment, applicant will need to pay $100 for a clinic-based assessment or $250 for non-clinic based assessment. You will be reimbursed for the assessment fee if assessed to be severely disabled.

    30. Can I appeal for ElderFund?

    There will be individuals who do not meet the ElderFund eligibility criteria, but are in need of financial support for long-term care. You may reach out to the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) through the AIC website, AIC hotline (1800-650-6060) or speak to a Care Consultant at AIC Links located at the public hospitals and Maxwell.

    31. How was the payout amount of $250/month decided for ElderFund?

    ElderFund will supplement existing Government subsidies/assistance schemes, community support, and family support, to better enable lower-income Singaporeans to afford their basic long-term care needs.

    As a comparison, the payout of $250/month is similar to the current level of payouts under the Interim Disability Assistance Programme for the Elderly (IDAPE).

    If you are still unable to meet your long-term care needs after tapping on the various means-tested Government subsidies and assistance schemes, you can apply for financial assistance through Government-funded safety nets such as MediFund and ComCare.