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Long-Term Care Financing

Why do you need to plan for your future long-term care needs?

Singaporeans are living longer. However, this comes with the increased risk of becoming severely disabled, especially towards the end of life.

1 in 2 healthy Singaporeans aged 65 could become severely disabled in their lifetime, and may need long-term care. We need to plan for our future long-term care needs, but working out how much to save can be difficult given the uncertainty of long-term care costs. The median duration for which severely disabled Singapore residents could remain in disability is four years, but around 3 in 10 could remain in severe disability for 10 years or more.

We will need to plan ahead for our long-term care needs, without putting unnecessary burden on our families and caregivers.

What is long-term care

What is severe disability?

“Severe disability” is the inability of an individual to perform three or more Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) independently, with or without mobility aids (e.g. walking aids, wheelchair). This means that the individual will require the physical assistance of another person for the ADL.



The ability to wash in the bath or shower (including getting into and out of the bath or shower) or wash by other means.



The ability to put on, take off, secure and unfasten all garments and, as appropriate, any braces, artificial limbs or other surgical or medical appliances.



The ability to feed oneself food after it has been prepared and made available.



The ability to use the lavatory or manage bowel and bladder function through the use of protective undergarments or surgical appliances if appropriate.

Walking or Moving Around


The ability to move indoors from room to room on level surfaces.



The ability to move from a bed to an upright chair or wheelchair, and vice versa.

How can you pay for your long-term care costs?

You can tap on a mix of financing sources to support the costs of long-term care:

Long-term Care Financing Schemes and Subsidies

Government Subsidies in Eligible Facilities
Home and community care Residential services e.g. nursing home care
Means-tested subsidy of up to 80% Means-tested subsidy of up to 75%

Click here for the full subsidy tables.

Long-Term Care Financing Schemes
CareShield Life

The Ministry of Health (MOH) appointed an ElderShield Review Committee in October 2016 to study ways to enhance the ElderShield scheme to better address the needs of Singaporeans who become severely disabled during their old age. Check out their recommendations here.


A long-term care insurance scheme targeted at severe disability which provides monthly payouts of $300 or $400 per month.

Interim Disability Assistance Scheme (IDAPE)

Cash assistance of $150 or $250 per month for severely disabled Singaporeans who cannot join ElderShield in 2002 because of their age or pre-existing disabilities then.

Seniors’ Mobility and Enabling Fund (SMF)

Provides means-tested subsidies for assistive devices, home healthcare items or transport to and from community-based care centres.

Foreign Domestic Worker Levy Concession (FDWLC)

Lowers the monthly concessionary Foreign Domestic Worker levy to $60 for a family who hires a domestic worker to care for a patient.

Foreign Domestic Worker Grant (FDWG)

Means-tested scheme which provides cash payout of $120 per month for a family to help offset the cost of hiring a foreign domestic worker to care for a disabled person who requires assistance with at least three out of six Activities of Daily Living.

Caregiver’s Training Grant (CTG)

Annual subsidy of $200 for caregivers to attend approved courses to better care for their loved ones.

Pioneer Disability Assistance Scheme (PioneerDAS)

Lifelong cash assistance of $100 per month for disabled Pioneers who permanently require assistance with at least three out of six Activities of Daily Living.

Visit for more information on all the various schemes.

Last Updated on 27 May 2018