TO address the needs of new parents, OCBC Bank has birthed Singapore's first pure maternity protection plan, MaxMaternity Care, that is not bundled with an investment-linked plan (ILP).

"MaxMaternity Care is a three-year policy that aims to protect the expectant mother against maternity complications from as early as the 13th week of pregnancy, and to continue protecting the newborn against congenital illnesses until the policy matures," said the bank.

Among the benefits, MaxMaternity Care will pay a cash allowance of up to 30 days (hospital care benefit) if hospital stay is required by the mother or child due to any of the covered complications.

The newborn will get a discount of up to S$108 for the first premium payment on his/her first integrated shield plan, SupremeHealth, which primarily covers hospitalisation and surgical expenses.

In Singapore, major life insurers like AIA, NTUC Income and Prudential said they offer either a protection plan for pregnant mothers that covers pregnancy complications or even the yet-to-be-born baby, or provide related riders. But these plans usually have the ILP component.

For example, both AIA and NTUC Income have riders that provide related coverage. In AIA's instance, its Family First Baby is also an ILP.

Prudential offers a separate plan - PRUfirst gift - that comprises an ILP component.

Compared with a pure maternity protection plan, ILPs are investment products that require medium to long-term commitment and monitoring of their investment value. OCBC, which has assumed the role of the Baby Bonus Bank since 2008, said these riders only provide the expectant mothers with coverage from the 18th week of pregnancy.

The premium for MaxMaternity Care is payable only once, and expectant mothers aged 17 to 29 who are OCBC customers can expect to fork out S$521 for the basic plan and S$905 for the enhanced plan.

Premiums payable for those aged 30 to 38 are between S$659 and S$1,182.

For those aged 39 to 44, the premiums payable are between S$901 and S$1,666.

MaxMaternity Care is underwritten by The Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited, a subsidiary of Great Eastern Holdings Limited and a member of the OCBC Group.