My little boy came home from school and repeated to me what his teacher told him.
“Mommy, teacher said if I have cough, fever, runny nose, cold…..and don’t know what else…I cannot go to school.”

Then, the six years old continued like a wise old man. “Teacher said I must always wash hands and wear mask. You know…my friend has dunno what spray. He gave me some and it smells nice.”

Well, it is kind of sad that our innocent young children now have to adopt such hygiene habits like constant hand-washing, sanitizing and even resorted to wearing masks. Children like my son are supposed to be running about, getting into messy games, having friends to wrestle and play with.

The scrooge of the A(H1N1) virus and the threats on our health have somehow robbed off innocent fun for our kids. Many parents are even too afraid to bring their children out to public places. A lot are making young children very paranoid about germs and getting them hand sanitizer to be obsessed with.

Though my boy did ask if we can buy him hand sanitizer like his friend, my hubby refused because he said this will make my boy too uptight and who knows, may develop obsessive compulsive behavior and ended up to be a compulsive hand-washing fellow who needs to wash hands every 10 minutes.

This A(H1N1) threat certainly makes us parents with young children think hard. It doesn’t give me sleepless nights but it does remind me how fragile our children are and how much we ought to be on alert. It also reminded me to make sure that I have the best health protection that we can afford for them.

Health protection does not stop at taking preventive health measures but also if we have enough money or health insurance to take care of any hospitalization. I hope all parents are responsible enough to make sure that their children are amply covered by health insurance? Certainly no one have kids and never thought of leaving their children unprotected?

It is very common for children to need hospital stays at least a couple of times during their childhood years. Even the healthiest and strongest, well protected and cared for children may get those little bumps like a bad cold, a cut or some bad tummy upsets. So, never be naïve to think that these only happen to others and never you. Don’t ever take things for granted.

There is nothing more painful than having our child sick and then, we cannot afford the best and most comfortable hospital stay for them. All my children were well covered with the best hospital private suite, thanks to my hubby’s company health insurance. So, when our children were sick, at least we had a nice room to keep the sick child’s company.

Therefore, parents, do make a serious commitment to start putting a tiny sum aside for health insurance. A package like Pruhealth is a good place to start. Premiums are affordable – it starts from as low as RM100 a month. And if you stay healthy and do not make any claims, you can get a bonus (or NCB as they call it) in return.

I have been there, done that. From a son who had childhood asthma who spent at least RM18K per year in hospital stays to another son who spent RM85K for his premature birth related illness, I know health insurance is a necessity for us parents.

When my eldest son was young, he had to be warded constantly for lungs infection. Each hospitalization normally takes 5 days and that easily costs several thousand ringgit. For my fourth son, it was even more nightmarish as a stay in the ICU costs up to RM1.2K per day. Some of the hospitalisation was covered by health insurance while some were not. Each time, the hospital will ask for RM12K deposit and without health insurance provided by hubby’s company and his generous boss in financing the rest of the medical treatment, I guess we would be in very deep trouble.

Anyway…parents, don’t wait any longer. See that you have ample coverage for your little ones.