Maternity Coverage - Explained
Hong Kong’s private hospitals are known for their state of the art equipment and leading client care. Due to this high quality of care they are also known for their high prices. Routine delivery costs and packages can vary from anywhere between US$6,000 and US$25,000.
To avoid this cost you may think you will go to a public hospital for your delivery. However due to the influx of expats and Chinese nationals then the strain on maternity departments are huge. You need to book your delivery bed as soon as you get pregnant and even then there is no guarantee that they will not be fully booked. In this case you will have to go private.
To try and ease the pressure on the public healthcare system the Hong Kong government introduced a mandatory pricing structure for foreign mothers wishing to give birth at local hospitals. Foreign nationals who do not have a permanent ID card must pay a booking fee of US$5,000 for a three day, two night maternity package.So, whether you go public or private for your delivery, there is a large out of pocket expense. This shows the need for insurance coverage if you are planning on having a child in Hong Kong.
Coverage Limits and waiting periods
Coverage limits vary greatly from one insurer to another, some have very low limits of US$6,000 whereas some have much higher limits of US$26,000. It is definitely worth comparing the plans and their maternity benefits to be able to find the right coverage and price for you.
Maternity options also have something called a “waiting period”, this is the amount of time you need to wait before you can claim for any costs. Maternity costs for insurers are very high and they put in place a waiting period so that people don’t just get a maternity plan for a year, claim as much as they can and cancel it once the baby has been born.
Waiting periods on the maternity option is between 8-12 months. Therefore any costs incurred within the first 8-12 months of your plan starting relating to maternity cannot be claimed back.
What will be covered?
Maternity plans usually provide cover for:
Normal delivery, complications of delivery, pre & post natal treatments and examinations, hospital or home delivery and medically necessary c-sections.
You should always read the benefits table carefully to know exactly what is covered under the plan. You do not want to be liable for unexpected costs due to the specific policy exclusions.