Jan 21, 2013

of www.heybaby.sg singapore's $2b package to boost fertility rate

The government announced the Marriage & Parenthood Package 2013.

Parenthood Priority Scheme - First-timer married couples with children will be given priority allocation for their HDB flats by setting aside a proportion of flats for them.

Parenthood Provisional Housing Scheme - First-timer married couples with children can rent a flat from HDB at an affordable rental rate while awaiting the completion of their flats.

Enhanced Co-Funding for Assisted Reproduction Technology (ART) Treatment - The Government will co-fund up to 75% of the cost of each ART treatment received at public hospitals, with co-funding now extended to three fresh and three frozen cycles. Couples with more than one child will now also be eligible for co-funding.

Accouchement Fees for Higher-Order Births - Accouchement fees in public hospitals will no longer be differentiated across birth order. This will help defray the cost of deliveries for couples who may be thinking of having more children.

Addition to the existing Enhanced Baby Bonus - Savings to a child’s Child Development Account (CDA) are matched dollar-for-dollar by the Government for up to $6,000 each for the 1st and 2nd child, up to $12,000 each for the 3rd and 4th child, and up to $18,000 each from the 5th child onwards.

With effect from 1 January 2013, the CDA will be extended by 6 years. This means that children born on or after 1 January 2006 will continue to have their CDAs open until 31 December of the year they turn 12, instead of 31 December of the year they turn 6. Parents can continue to save into the CDA and use CDA funds for their children and their siblings until 31 December of the year they turn 12.

MediShield Coverage for Congenital & Neonatal Conditions - Newborns will be covered under MediShield from birth without having to be assessed for pre-existing conditions, including for congenital and neonatal conditions, so long as their parents do not opt them out.

Addition to the existing Extended Child Care Leave - Both parents have 2 days of paid child care leave per year each if they have at least one child aged 7-12 years.

Adoption Leave - Adoptive mothers with an adopted infant aged below 12 months will be entitled to 4 weeks of paid adoption leave.

Enhanced Maternity Protection for Pregnant Employees - Working mothers will be entitled to maternity leave benefits if they are dismissed without sufficient cause or retrenched within the full duration of their pregnancy.

Government-Paid Maternity Benefit for Shorter-Term Workers - Working mothers who are not eligible for maternity leave may apply to receive the Government-Paid Maternity Benefit, as long as they have been in employment for a total of at least 90 days in the 12 months leading up to childbirth.

The existing Work-Life Works! Fund will be enhanced to provide incentives to encourage employers to offer flexible work arrangements for their employees.

Paternity Leave - Working fathers will be entitled to one week of paid paternity leave.

Shared Parental Leave - Working fathers will be entitled to share 1 week of the 16 weeks of maternity leave, subject to the agreement of the mother.

A summary of measures can be found at http://www.heybaby.sg/summaryofmeasures.html

For more information on Marriage and Parenthood package, you can visit the website: www.heybaby.sg


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