Health x Wellness

9 in 10 Singaporeans struggling with mental health after pandemic year

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AIA Singapore shares a new study on the state of Singaporeans’ mental health at the one-year mark since COVID-19 was declared a pandemic.

The AIA Health Matters Survey 2021 reveals that 91 percent of respondents report declines in their mental health over fears of income loss and job instability. 6 out of 10 respondents are also concerned about the burden that might come with a critical illness diagnosis such as cancer.

The AIA Singapore study polled over 300 Singaporeans aged 30 to 55 across a spectrum of working adults representative of the the resident population.

mental health

Worry about family and loved ones impacting mental health

Singaporeans are concerned about their own health, and also feeling anxious about their family’s and loved ones’ overall wellbeing. This added to the stress of the pandemic year.

According to the study, there was a 10 percent increase (compared to 2016) in diagnosis concerns for critical illnesses. Cancer was the illness respondents were most worried about (73 percent of respondents). There is also a substantial increase in stroke concerns, from 60 percent in 2016 to 68 percent in 2021.

While our nation is heading for a post-pandemic recovery, mentally, we are still trying to navigate our way out of COVID-19 uncertainties.

Ms Wong Sze Keed, Chief Executive Officer of AIA Singapore

Mental health insurance coverage

Amongst mental health conditions, anxiety and Major Depressive Disorders were revealed to be the most prevalent.

The AIA Study shared that 95 percent of respondents feel being adequately covered for early to advanced stage critical illness is important. However, there is an observation that only 18 percent of respondents reported that their critical illness plans or riders include mental health coverage.

Amongst the different demographic groups surveyed, men and millennials are more willing to take up more extensive insurance plans such as those that include mental health coverage.

Additionally, the majority of the male respondents who are breadwinners stated that they are more likely to report when they are facing mental health and critical illness conditions compared to women.

Consider insurance plans that cover mental health

AIA Singapore has a critical illness plan – AIA Beyond Critical Care – that also provides mental health coverage for five prominent mental illnesses: Major Depressive Disorder, Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Tourette Syndrome (up to age 21). For more information, visit the website for the AIA Beyond Critical Care plan.

Call these helplines if you or someone you know needs support

  • National Care Hotline: 1800-202-6868 (8am-12am daily, from 1 Sep 2020)
  • Samaritans of Singapore (1800-221-4444)
  • Institute of Mental Health’s Mental Health Helpline (6389-2222)

Here are some tips to help improve our mental health.

Join or nominate a mental wellness champion or friend to walk and support a fundraising event by the Caregivers Alliance – Walk for Mental Wellness.

Photo by Anthony Tran on Unsplash

Photo by Fernando @cferdo on Unsplash