Posted on Mar 28, 2018
The answer is…No. From 1 January 2016, you no longer need to top-up your Medisave Account (MA) with your savings in your Ordinary Account (OA) or Special Account (SA) before you can make a withdrawal from your OA and/or SA at age 55 – even if you do not meet your Basic Healthcare Sum (BHS).
The BHS is the estimated savings that a typical Singaporean would need for basic subsidised healthcare needs in old age. It currently stands at $54,500. However, for CPF members age 65 and above, the BHS is fixed in the year when they turn age 65 and will not change thereafter. The table below shows the BHS for members age 65 and above.
Before 2016, members who did not have the Medisave Minimum Sum (MMS) would have to top up the difference before they could make a CPF withdrawal at age 55. However, this is no longer the case after the BHS was introduced. Some members also fear that if they do not have the BHS, they cannot use their Medisave savings for their healthcare needs. There is absolutely no truth to that.
In summary, the BHS is simply the maximum amount that can be contributed to your MA. It has no implication on your ability to use your Medisave savings or make withdrawals from your CPF after you turn 55 years old.
Can I choose to top-up my Medisave Account to meet the Basic Healthcare Sum?
Yes, you can use cash to make a voluntary contribution to the MA for yourself or for your loved ones to build up the BHS, and enjoy tax benefits at the same time.
If you are aged 55 and above and have set aside the FRS or BRS with sufficient property charge/pledge in your Retirement Account, you may also choose to transfer the savings in your Special and/or Ordinary Account(s) to your MA, up to the BHS that applies to you.
You can also do the same for your loved ones’ MA, up to their BHS. Loved ones refer to spouse, siblings, parents, grandparents, parents-in-law and grandparents-in-law. The savings which you transferred to them can be used for their own and their immediate family’s medical expenses. This also includes paying premiums for approved medical insurance schemes.
For more information, please refer to the CPF website (www.cpf.gov.sg > Healthcare > Medisave > Evaluate > “Can I transfer my savings from other CPF accounts into my/my loved ones’ Medisave Account?”).