Saving for hospital care costs in Singapore: are there lessons for Australia? [corrected] Academic Article uri icon


  • Australian political leaders and policy analysts have increasingly sought to learn from Singapore, a nation which, despite its small size and lack of natural resources, has enjoyed rapid economic growth. Of particular interest to Australian policymakers has been Singapore's compulsory superannuation system, which has provided high levels of domestic savings and high levels of home ownership; it has also incorporated a scheme to enable Singaporeans to save for the costs of health care. In this article, Singapore's Medisave policy is described within its broader socioeconomic context. Saving for health care costs has been a largely neglected option in recent policy debate about reforming funding arrangements for hospital care in Australia. The potential for a formalised scheme for medical savings in Australia, subsidised by taxation concessions, is explored in terms of its socioeconomic policy implications, its congruence with Australian values, and the logistical ramifications of such a scheme.

publication date

  • January 1, 1995