Last updated: 16 March 2023
What is the Home Caregiving Grant?
The Home Caregiving Grant (HCG) gives a S$250 or S$400 monthly cash payout to eligible Singaporeans to help families care for their loved ones experiencing moderate to severe disabilities. This grant replaces the Foreign Domestic Worker (FDW) Grant and forms part of a new Caregiver Support Action Plan developed by the Ministry of Health (MOH).
These monthly cash payouts can be used to defray the costs of senior care and caregiver support services in the community apart from the hiring of a Foreign Domestic Worker (FDW). This allows families more flexibility when tapping on this subsidy and increases the respite options that family caregivers can tap on.
From 1 March 2023, the HCG has been enhanced to further support families and caregivers. As such, the monthly payout amount has been increased from the original sum of S$200.
|Household Monthly Income per person||Current HCG monthly payout||Enhanced HCG monthly payout (From 1 March 2023)|
|$0 - $1,200 (or Annual Value of Residence* ≤ $13,000 for households without income)||$200||$400^|
|$1,201 - $2,800||$250|
Source: Agency for Integrated Care
^ If you own multiple properties, you will receive the lower tier of S$250 per month.
* The Annual Value of your Residence in 2022 will be used to determine your eligibility for social support schemes such as HCG in 2023.
Please refer to the press release by the Ministry of Finance on this matter.
Criteria for Grant Qualification
To qualify for the Home Caregiving Grant, you need to:
- Be a Singapore Citizen or a Permanent Resident (PR) residing in Singapore (with a parent, child, or spouse who is a Singapore Citizen)
- Be means-tested to have per capita household monthly income that is S$2,800 or less, or belong to a household with no income and living in a residence with an annual value that is S$13,000 or less
- If you have multiple properties, you will receive the lower HCG payout of $250 per month
- Be residing in a proper housing type in Singapore, not a residential long-term care institution (e.g. nursing homes)
- Have at least permanent moderate disability, meaning that you always need assistance with at least three activities of daily living (ADLs)
What does ‘Permanent Moderate Disability’ mean?
An individual is considered to have permanent moderate disability if they are unable to independently perform at least 3 ADLs and will always require the physical assistance of another individual throughout the entire activity.
The 6 activities of daily living (ADLs) include:
- Washing: The ability to wash your face or body in the bath or shower independently as well as physically getting in and out of the shower.
- Dressing: The ability to choose which clothes to wear, putting them on, and managing your self appearance. This includes securing and unfastening any artificial limbs, braces, and other medical and surgical appliances, if needed.
- Feeding: The ability to feed oneself after the food has been prepared.
- Toileting: The ability to get to and from the toilet, use it properly, and clean yourself afterwards. This includes putting on protective undergarments such as diapers or surgically appliances unaccompanied, if required.
- Mobility: The ability to sit, stand, walk and move from one place to another on level surfaces by yourself.
- Transferring: While similar to functional mobility and sometimes used interchangeably, transferring focuses on all aspects of being able to move from a bed to an upright chair or wheelchair and vice versa.
Comparing Home Caregiving Grant and Foreign Domestic Worker Grant
While the HCG has retained some similarities from the FDW Grant, they still have distinct key differences. Here are some of the key similarities and differences between the two grants.
A means-testing assessment is essentially a method used to assess your financial circumstances and considers the household monthly income per person. Since it assesses whether you have limited financial means, this helps lower-income families in Singapore receive more subsidies than those from higher-income households.
For both the HCG and FDW Grant, the annual value of property for households has to be S$13,000 or less if they do not have an income, or have a monthly income of S$2,800 or less in order to qualify for the schemes.
2. Assistance with ADLs
Another similarity that both grants have is that applicants need help with at least three activities of daily living (ADL). These include bathing, dressing, eating, toileting, transferring, or walking or moving around.
1. Expenses Covered
The former FDW grant that has been phased out was only meant to offset the cost of hiring foreign domestic workers.
With the new HCG, the grant offsets multiple caregiving expenses beyond hiring FDWs such as home care services, senior care services, caregiver support services in the community, and even transportation to medical appointments.
2. Qualification Criteria
Previously, the criteria to qualify for the FDW grant was far more stringent. Care recipients had to be Singapore Citizens, or FDW employers had to be a Singapore Citizen caring for a PR who is more than 65 years of age. Hired FDWs were also required to attend AIC-approved Caregiver Training Courses before they could start work.
Today, as long as you are a Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident (PR), with a spouse, child, or parent who is a Singaporean, you are qualified for the HCG. Furthermore, there are no age restrictions for applicants. However, they cannot be living in a residential long-term care institution like nursing homes.
3. Monthly Payout
In the previous FDW grant, the monthly cash payout was S$120. With the Enhanced HCG that has been in effect from 1 March 2023, the monthly payouts have been increased to a minimum of $250 per month.
How do I apply?
Here is a step-by-step guide to applying for the Home Caregiving Grant:
Step 1: Fill up the HCG Application Form
The Long Term Care Schemes Guide & Application Form is available for download to all applicants via the AIC website. Before filling up the form with all your personal details, ensure that you have read the terms and conditions.
Step 2: Update your household information
Once you have downloaded and completed the application form, check that your household has been means-tested. If you need to update your household information, you may do so on the MOH Household Check Website. If you have opted out from sharing your financial information with MOH in the past, you may also allow eligibility checks on your financial information on the website as well.
Step 3: Undergo a disability assessment
Every HCG applicant needs to undergo a disability assessment to assess a person’s need for assistance with basic activities of daily living. To do so, you can visit your local clinic or make an arrangement with your care provider to obtain a Functional Assessment Report (FAR).
Step 4: Submit your application documents to AIC
Now that you have completed the first three steps, all that’s left to do is submit your application to the AIC. Ensure that you have completed and compiled your HCG application form, FAR assessment, and any other supporting documents that are deemed necessary.
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What happens after I submit my application?
Once you have submitted your application, AIC will inform you of the results via mail to your registered address. Due to the high volume of applications, the processing may take up to a month. Successful applicants will receive a monthly payout of S$250 or s$400 in their bank account as long as the care recipient remains eligible.
Apart from the Home Caregiving Grant, there are also various other avenues where you can receive financial aid and subsidies for the elderly. To make healthcare more affordable and readily available for Singaporeans, the government has implemented multiple schemes to alleviate any financial burden. However, many seniors and caregivers are unaware of their eligibility and even the existence of some of these programmes.
Read our full financial guide here to learn more about the different financial assistance schemes available for elderly persons in Singapore and get access to all the information you need. This comprehensive guide covers everything from MediSave Care, ElderShield, CareShield Life, Community Health Assist Scheme (CHAS), Foreign Domestic Levy Concession, Medical Fee Exemption Card and more.
- Baker, J. (2019, February 13). New S$200 monthly grant to offset costs of long-term caregiving by end-2019: MOH. Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/new-caregivers-monthly-grant-offset-costs-ministry-of-health-11238776
- Chronic Disease Management. (n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.primarycarepages.sg/patient-care/chronic-disease-management/functional-assessment-report-(far)
- Grey, H. (2020, November 20). Activities of Daily Living (ADL) in Singapore. Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.homage.sg/resources/activities-of-daily-living-adl/
- Home – MediShield Life. (n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://household-check.moh.gov.sg/
- Hui, T. (2020, November 20). Financial Assistance for Elderly & Caregiver Grants. Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.homage.sg/resources/financial-assistance-for-elderly-and-caregiver-grants-singapore/
- Hui, T. (2020, November 20). Top Nursing Home and Old Folks Home in Singapore. Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.homage.sg/resources/nursing-home-singapore/
- News. (n.d.). Retrieved November 30, 2020, from https://www.primarycarepages.sg/news-and-publications/news/the-home-caregiving-grant-(hcg)-and-changes-to-functional-assessment-report-(far)
- Home Caregiving Grant. Agency for Integrated Care. (n.d.). Retrieved March 16, 2023, from https://www.aic.sg/financial-assistance/home-caregiving-grant