A Doc's Life is a underground Medical Blog about some poor Singapore doctors. They are sibei sian and very buay song. Best practices not observed!
(Warning: Grammar is non existent in this blog. Those obsessively compulsive about good English please go no further and book an appointment to see your psychiatrist in Singapore.)

Friday, August 12, 2016

The High Cost of Living (Actually Staying Healthy)?

Recently, a patient got dulan (henceforth DL) when his doctor billed her for two illnesses at the same setting instead of one consult. The case of the angry patient caught the attention of a reporter who seems perpetually DL with doctors. She then managed to get MOH and many doctors DL when she wrote that:

"The Ministry of Health (MOH) said there is nothing wrong with the way Dr Wee charges." 

MOH wrote back that they never say "nothing wrong" so don't anyhow say hor. Wait, MOH didn't really say that. They said this. SO PLEASE DON"T DL ME CAN?

Moral of the story? Singapore everyone also DL?

This issue of rising medical cost is of course a real issue. Dr Og and family also get sick and sometimes going to see real doctors can be sibei heart pain, so I can liao kai when you see a doctor you want to get the most out of it. Come for flu, also better get stomach checked coz like abit pain pain liddat. Wait, better also check the heart, coz later see bill confirm heart pain.

But from the other perspective, life also not easy for doctors la. In public hospital when your department lose money, your CEO start looking at the HOD eyes big big. In public still can hide here, siam there. After all is ah gong footing the bill.

In private, its your own problemo liao. Who call you hiao, want to go to the dark side tio boh? Got one day, a private specialist complain to me. He say someone complain he overcharge and never follow the price guidelines provided by SMA. Wah, the guidelines are so ancient Dr Og also almost forget liao (actually Dr Og never received the guidelines coz I always default membership payment for SMA until they DL me hahahaha).

But hor, if you do a simple google search, some jokers still putting up the price guideline online! Even as recent as June 2016. See this and this! For your info, the price guideline was found to be contravening competition law. Its all too cheem for Dr Og to explain so please read yourself la.

So what does this all mean? It means that since 2007 after they withdrew this price guideline, it has not been updated. Should doctors follow a 2007 price guide? I don't know about you but the bak chor mee I always eat was at most $3.50 in 2007. Last month, the owner just raised the price to $6.00. I don't blame him given how inflation has been in Singapore.

As for my private specialist friend, it turns out that the price he charged was within the range of the price guideline. The complainant obviously didn't bother to do his homework properly. When the specialist found out he told me, "wah, I'm charging 2007 rates ar?"

He so DL he decided to raise his charges.

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