Fertility centres in S’pore need Australian certification by 2013

Assisted reproduction centres are facing problems with meeting requirements and financial demands. -AsiaOne

Mon, Aug 27, 2012

SINGAPORE – Assisted reproduction centres in Singapore now have until January 2013 to have themselves certified by Australia’s Reproductive Technology Accreditation Committee.

This means that the centres have to make sure anyone giving or receiving sperm, eggs or embryos has a meeting with a member of the Australian and New Zealand Infertility Counsellors Association.

However, there are not many specialised counsellors here, fertility experts told The Straits Times. At least two centres are suspending donor sperm services as they fear they will not be able to find a counsellor in time to meet the deadline.

There is no local accreditation committee, the paper reported.

Tougher standards for in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment have been introduced following the 2010 sperm donor mix-up.  Then, a woman conceived using the wrong man’s sperm sample during her IVF treatment following a mix-up at Thomson Fertility Centre.

Fertility centres are already facing a shortage of samples. Between 2005 and 2010, only six women donated eggs to the Singapore General Hospital, and only eight men gave samples to its sperm bank, reported The Straits Times.

As a result, fertility centres often obtain their samples from overseas.

To add to the problem, fertility centres are also confused over how the accreditation will work as on top of complying with the Australian standards, they also must follow Singapore’s Health Ministry guidelines on licensing terms and conditions.

There is also the financial burden of getting a licence from Australia which costs at least $75,000 a year and the cost of flying in auditors from Australia to get accreditation.

Centres may have to reduce multiple pregnancies, as regulators see them as an undesirable outcome. However, by reducing the number of embryos transferred into patients, it could reduce pregnancy rates, and lead to more costly IVF cycles.

A cycle of treatment costs between $8,000 and $15,000, and public hospital patients can apply for subsidies up to $3,000 a cycle.

Thomson Fertility Centre and National University Hospital have received their Australian certification so far, according to The Straits Times.

A Ministry of Health spokesperson told the paper that it may consider giving centres more time, depending on their progress or restrict services until full accreditation is obtained.

She also clarified that if the two sets of guidelines overlap, the Singapore ones take precedence.




Doctor suspended, fined for inappropriate treatment
Updated 12:36 PM Sep 07, 2012

SINGAPORE – A doctor has been suspended for six months and fined S$10,000 for inappropriately treating his patient, who had lymphoma.

Dr Teoh Kheng Hoe Gerrard, 52, was a haematologist practicing as Medical Director at the Clinic for Blood Disorders and Research at Gleneagles Hospital.

The Singapore Medical Council (SMC) received a complaint on Aug 13, 2009, and Dr Teoh pleaded guilty to two charges of professional misconduct in his treatment of the patient and was convicted.

Dr Teoh had recommended and administered a therapy – Rituximab, Velcade, Dexamethasone, Thalidomide, Zometa therapy, also known as the VELCADE-based Therapy – that he should have known, or knew was neither a generally accepted method of treatment by the medical profession, nor the appropriate treatment.

The Disciplinary Committee (DC) found that Dr Teoh’s conduct breached the SMC’s ethical code and ethical guidelines.

In determining the sentence, the committee cited “grave concerns”, said the SMC in a statement today.

Among these, Dr Teoh gave the patient’s family the impression that the treatment was provided in a trial setting when it was not, and he also had “close association” with the company that manufactured Velcade and his perceptions could have been “clouded”.

“Given that the patient and the family were vulnerable in the face of life-threatening illness and would have greatly relied on Dr Teoh’s advice, the DC also found that the Patient’s and his family’s trust was abused,” said the SMC, adding that there is a public interest element involved.

As a result of Dr Teoh’s misconduct, the patient’s health deteriorated and he suffered complications. “Substantial sums” were also incurred by the family for the treatment method advocated by Dr Teoh and to address the complications.

The DC also raised doubts on Dr Teoh’s remorse as he continued to “justify the appropriateness” of his recommended treatment.

The DC, however, took into account several mitigating factors. For instance, Dr Teoh is a first-time offender and had an unblemished record in his last 26 years of practice.

Dr Teoh, who was also censured, will have to provide a written undertaking to the SMC that he wil not engage in the conduct complained of, or any similar conduct, unless he had approval to do so. In addition, he will also have to pay the costs and expenses of the proceedings.

URL http://www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120907-0000111/Doctor-suspended,-fined-for-inappropriate-treatment

Wed, Jan 21, 2009

The Straits Times

By Jessica Jaganathan

TWO multi-million dollar centres that specialise in day surgery have folded, following just over two years of mounting losses.

The closure of the two facilities, located in the Orchard Road area, has left patients and the doctors who rent out their operating rooms in the lurch.

The doctors claim the Singapore Day Surgery Centre at Camden Medical Centre and Day Surgery International at Paragon owed them hundreds of thousands of dollars in professional fees when they closed their doors on Jan 9.

The centres are in the process of being liquidated and owe about $2 million to creditors, said liquidation firm Infinity Consulting.

The closures are the latest blow to the health-care sector, which is traditionally one of Singapore’s most resilient industries. Two months ago, a mid-sized medical group – Excellence Healthcare – closed its doors to the surprise of industry experts.

The Singapore Day Surgery Centre and Day Surgery International are owned by orthopaedic surgeon Kevin Yip and his wife, oncologist Joanna Lin.

The centres opened in November 2006, boasting a combined 14 operating theatres that could be rented by private doctors looking for a venue for plastic surgery, eye operations and dental procedures. They promised lower costs for operating rooms than hospitals.

But Dr Yip, who has a clinic at Gleneagles Medical Centre, said the company folded due to high operating costs, slow business and the relative novelty of facilities devoted to day surgery. Most of the procedures the centres offered are normally handled in hospitals and doctors were slow to refer patients.

‘We have seen a gradual trend of more and more doctors using the facilities but we never reached the break-even point,’ Dr Yip told The Straits Times.

He added that potential investors pulled out in October last year at the start of the economic crisis. Dr Yip and Dr Lin invested nearly $10 million in the centres.

Patients are owed a combined $80,000 from the facilities, which collected the money from Medisave but have yet to pass it back to the patients.

Dr Yip said those debts are the centres’ first priority and will most probably be paid by Chinese New Year.

Meanwhile, some of the doctors who rented the operating rooms say they have not received their surgical fees, which are collected from patients by health-care centres and then passed on to doctors.

Ten specialists based at the Camden, Paragon and Mount Elizabeth medical centres told The Straits Times that they are among the many who have not received the fees.

Some claim they have been waiting since November, with the outstanding amounts ranging from $10,000 to $70,000 per surgeon.

‘It’s really unfortunate that this has happened, but given the current crisis, there is probably more to come,’ said Dr Gerard Chuah, an eye surgeon at Camden, who has not received about $10,000 in professional fees.

Dr Yip said that despite crippling losses, he is ‘exploring ways’ to cover the professional fees.

The company is currently inviting other health-care companies to take over the day surgery centres, which have been used by 60 doctors.

‘I still hope the day surgery facility will exist as it will help keep costs low for patients wanting to do day surgeries,’ said a specialist at Paragon who asked to remain anonymous.

This article was first published in The Straits Times on January 19, 2009.

SINGAPORE: Surgeon Susan Lim has filed an appeal to the High Court, against the punishment meted out by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC).

Channel NewsAsia understands the SMC has ruled that Dr Lim be suspended from practice for three years, fined S$10,000 and censured in writing.

Channel NewsAsia understands she was found guilty of 94 charges of professional misconduct in July.

The case revolves around overcharging the late sister of the Brunei queen.

Dr Lim’s bill for treating Pengiran Anak Hajah Damit over seven months came up to S$25 million.

The patient died of cancer in 2007.

Dr Lim’s case has been in the spotlight since 2010, when Singapore’s Health Ministry filed charges of professional misconduct with SMC.

Dr Lim’s lawyers told Channel NewsAsia in a statement that they would present submissions to the Court on the errors of law and of fact committed by the Disciplinary Committee in reaching its decision.

They want the court to reverse the decision in its entirety.

Channel NewsAsia understands the case will be heard in the second week of January 2013.

– CNA/ck

Dentist suspended for 6 months for professional misconduct
Updated 02:06 PM Aug 15, 2012

SINGAPORE – A dentist who practises at a clinic in Bukit Timah Plaza has been suspended for six months.

Dr Lee Wai Han pleaded guilty to three charges of professional misconduct under the Dental Registration Act.

The first two charges were related to Dr Lee’s inappropriate treatment of a patient. One charge was in respect of Dr Lee’s recommendation and performance of the attempted closure of two extraction spaces on the patient’s lower jaw, while the other charge related to her recommendation of and placement of 18 veneers on the patient’s upper and lower teeth.

The third charge was related to Dr Lee’s failure to refer the same patient to a specialist when she encountered complications in the management of the patient.

The Singapore Dental Council said Dr Lee’s suspension took effect on Monday. CHANNEL NEWSASIA

URL http://www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120815-0000104/Dentist-suspended-for-6-months-for-professional-misconduct

$14k bill shock for retiree after operation

Retired businessman Steven Choo’s medical bill came up to $14,501, but even combined, Medisave and MediShield would only cover $1,710. -myp
Ethan Lou

Thu, Aug 02, 2012
my paper


Retired businessman Steven Choo, 60, underwent angioplasty at the Singapore General Hospital (SGH) to unclog blood vessels in his legs last November.

Mr Choo, who is diabetic, underwent the procedure – with “balloons” and stents used to unblock the arteries – which prevented gangrene from spreading from his toes.

But the successful operation marked the start of another round of problems for him. On the day he was discharged from hospital, he received a shock: His medical bill came up to $14,501, but Medisave and MediShield would cover only $900 and $810, respectively, or $1,710 combined.

SGH also told him he would not get his $6,620 deposit back, and that he still owed it $5,381, Mr Choo told my paper in an interview. The remaining $790 was covered by a government grant.

The Central Provident Fund (CPF) Board told him that the Medisave claim submitted by the hospital did not indicate a surgical procedure. This meant he could not claim the full amount he should have been entitled to: $3,050.

Insurance company AIA, which handles his MediShield account, told him likewise.

Mr Choo then hand-delivered a four-page report from his doctor to the CPF Board, explaining that angioplasty is a surgical procedure. But then he got another shock.

He said: “CPF Board wrote to tell me that they’re not paying because (the angioplasty) was not done in a ‘proper’ place.”

The CPF Board’s letter, dated Feb 8, read: “Only surgical procedures performed in a properly equipped operating theatre… are Medisave claimable.”

The head of SGH’s diagnostic radiology department, Associate Professor Tay Kiang Hiong, told my paper that Mr Choo’s angioplasty had been planned to take place in an operating theatre. But his operation was moved to an angiography suite – where angioplasty is also typically conducted.

This was because “there were urgent and complicated cases that needed to be performed in the operating theatre”, said Prof Tay.

Mr Choo then sent an e-mail message to the CPF Board arguing that he had been penalised because of where his operation was conducted.

The case remained in limbo for three months, said Mr Choo, who wrote to the CPF Board repeatedly, only to receive the same reply each time that his appeal was under review.

In May, the Ministry of Health (MOH) sent him an e-mail message informing him that his appeal had been successful.

Not long after, Mr Choo’s MediShield claim was also approved.

AIA told my paper that the claim was reviewed twice because there were inaccuracies in the initial claim.

Late last month, SGH called Mr Choo to tell him that both Medisave and MediShield amounts due to him had been paid out fully.

He was also entitled to a $638 refund from his deposit.

Six months later, the problem has been resolved but it has left Mr Choo irate. He said: “If I did not fight for it, where would I get the money from?”

Mr Choo added that he hopes that others would not have to be put through the same ordeal.

An MOH spokesman told my paper that angioplasty typically takes place in operating theatres.

As Mr Choo’s angioplasty took place in an angiography suite, it “was not deemed a surgical procedure”.

This is why SGH did not submit a Medisave claim for the procedure, said the spokesman.

The spokesman added: “We have since clarified with SGH that an angioplasty procedure… can be submitted for Medisave claims, even if it took place in the angiography suite.”


Doctor suspended for sex with patient, improper conduct

He admitted to four charges from when he was practising at the KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital.

Mon, Feb 11, 2008
The Straits Times

A DOCTOR has been suspended from practice for two years and censured by the Singapore Medical Council after a disciplinary inquiry last month. He was convicted of professional misconduct that included having sex with a patient.

Dr Yeong Cheng Toh admitted to four charges while he was practising at the KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital between April 2003 and March 2005, said a statement from the Singapore Medical Council on Monday.

He was represented by a lawyer at the inquiry, held on Jan 7 and 8. The disciplinary committee (DC) convicted him of improper conduct ‘which brings disrepute to the medical profession’ by engaging in a sexual relationship with a patient and failing to preserve the absolute confidence and trust of a doctor-patient relationship. This is in breach of the SMC’s ethical code and guidelines.

Dr Yeong also tampered with and made inaccurate changes to the patient’s biodata of the patient, and failed to keep proper and accurate records.

He also committed professional misconduct by failing to record or properly document details of the patient’s visits, medical condition and results on medical examinations during the treatment period, and failing to properly maintain patient confidentiality ‘in improperly disclosing to the patient, confidential information relating to the treatment and care of two other patients of the hospital’, said the SMC.

However, the committee took into account the mitigating factors that the patient was not ‘physically or psychologically vulnerable’ and there was no exploitation of the patient.

‘The DC also noted that Dr Yeong had no previous offences and had pleaded guilty, instead of contesting the charges. Based on the evidence presented, the DC was of the view that there was a low risk of Dr Yeong repeating the offence and also considered the favourable testimonies from Dr Yeong’s patients and colleagues,’ said the SMC statement.

Nonetheless, the DC was of the view that Dr Yeong’s conduct transgressed the professional boundary between a doctor and patient and a clear signal had to be sent to the medical profession that gross improper behaviour between a doctor and patient cannot be tolerated. The DC also viewed the three other charges as ‘serious offences.’

Besides the 24-month suspension and censure, Dr Yeong was also ordered to give a written undertaking to the SMC that he will not engage in the conduct which gave rise to the charges against him or any similar conduct in the future and to pay the costs of the disciplinary proceedings.



Surgeon’s appeal against suspension rejected

Former head of SGH’s colorectal surgery department suspended for failure to obtain informed consent. -AsiaOne

Fri, Mar 18, 2011

A senior doctor has lost his appeal against a suspension for failure to obtain informed consent from a patient.

The Straits Times reported today that Dr Eu Kong Weng is the first medical practitioner to be suspended on such a charge.

Dr Eu is the former head of the colorectal surgery department at Singapore General Hospital (SGH). In 2006, he had treated 45-year-old businessman Mr Ang Gee Kwang for fourth-degree piles. Mr Ang subsequently developed an infection and lodged a complaint to the Singapore Medical Council (SMC).

In his complaint, he claimed that Dr Eu had discussed only one form of treatment – stapled haemorrhoidectomy – and did not mention the risks and complications of the procedure.

Stapled haemorrhoidectomy is a treatment used for severe cases of piles. It works by restricting blood flow to the hemorrhoidal tissues, thus causing them to shrink and die. According Mayo Clinic’s website, this treatment is less painful and requires less recovery time than a traditional hemorrhoidectomy, in which the excess tissue is removed by the surgeon.

Dr Eu had challenged Mr Ang’s allegations, saying that he had discussed both treatment options and their risks.

The SMC disciplinary inquiry convicted Dr Eu in February last year of failing to get informed consent. While doctors in most previous cases involving informed-consent charges were fined and censured, the SMC felt that a deterrent sentence was warranted in Dr Eu’s case. This was to send a message to other doctors that they must explain all options and risks to their patients before treatment, The Straits Times reported SMC’s lawyer as saying.

Dr Eu had appealed against both his conviction and sentence, but they were dismissed by a three-judge court yesterday. The court will leave the SMC to decide when the suspension will begin.

Dr Eu stepped down from his position as head of colorectal surgery last year, but is still a senior consultant with SGH.


Wednesday, 10 l 11 l 2010 Source:  The Straits Times

$10,000 fine, censure for ad promoting ‘rejuvenating’, not medically proven, treatment

THE doctor fined and censured by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) last week for an advertisement
that gave the impression that he was a pioneer of stem-cell therapy is in the soup again. This time, Dr Wong Yoke Meng, 63, has been charged with advertising stem-cell treatment for facial and body “rejuvenation”, a procedure yet to be medically proven.

For this act of professional misconduct in March 2008, he is being fined $10,000 and censured. He also
has to give a written undertaking not to repeat the offence and bear the cost of the hearing. This comes after last week’s fine of $7,000 and censure. And he is not yet out of the woods. He told The Straits Times that another case against him, also for advertisements by his clinic in 2007, has been scheduled for hearing next week by the SMC, the watchdog of the medical profession.

Dr Wong, an obstetrician and gynaecologist by training, practises what he calls “preventive medicine” at his two clinics in Paragon Medical Centre. In 2007, he offered patients the option of “rejuvenating” stem-cell treatments in countries like Malaysia, Germany and Switzerland, as such treatments are not approved here. He recommended overseas clinics to his patients and cast himself as their provider of pre- and post-procedure treatment.

In a statement yesterday, the SMC noted that stem-cell treatments are for burns, scars and wound-healing, and that there is no published evidence in peer-reviewed scientific or medical journals on the usefulness of stem cells “to generate new skin cells for a fresher, younger look”, as Dr Wong’s advertisements claimed. The SMC did not accept his defence that the creams were cosmetic in nature. It pointed out that the advertisement used terms such as “aesthetic medicine” and “therapy”, which would lead potential patients to see them as medical treatments.

It said: “The public’s trust in the medical profession would therefore be violated if a doctor sold cosmetic
products instead of providing a medically proven treatment.” In deciding on just a fine and censure, the SMC
disciplinary committee noted that no one suffered “any actual harm”. Dr Wong, who feels aggrieved at being charged multiple times for the same offence, said he had not even been aware that he had broken the law, but
added: “It’s the law. Knowingly or unknowingly, I broke it.”

The SMC spokesman said the charges against him were made by different people and referred to different advertisements. The cases were heard by different disciplinary committees of the SMC. This is not Dr Wong’s first brush with the law. He was fined $8,000 and censured nine years ago for illegally letting another doctor use his clinic for cosmetic skin treatments. In May, he was fined $24,000 for sending patient samples to non-accredited laboratories overseas.

He is also appealing a ruling by the High Court in July to drop the word “Clinique” from the name of his practice, Clinique Suisse. Clinique Laboratories, a subsidiary of cosmetics giant Estee Lauder, had sued his clinic for trademark infringement.

By: Salma Khalik

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012
YourHealth, AsiaOne

SINGAPORE – Last November, Dr Singh was fined $10,000 and censured by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) after he admitted to six charges of professional conduct.

KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) has confirmed that it has lodged a police complaint against a doctor who accessed medical records of his former girlfriends.

KKH said Dr Singh Tre’gon Randhawa, 32, is not on active duty, and the hospital is also reviewing his employment.

The Ministry of Health also said that it is looking into taking further action against Dr Singh.

Last November, Dr Singh was fined $10,000 and censured by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) after he admitted to six charges of professional conduct.

Dr Singh had accessed the medical records of two ex-girlfriends in 2007 and 2009.

He accessed the first woman’s medical records when he learned that she was seeking treatment at the hospital for a suspected sexually transmitted disease and was worried he might have contracted the disease from her.

Dr Singh accessed another woman’s medical records in 2009 to find out when she had appointments at the hospital so that he could avoid her. He claims the relationship soured, and the woman had stalked and threatened him.

The second woman filed a complaint against him in August 2009, bringing his actions to light.

The SMC disciplinary committee said Dr Singh was let off with a lighter punishment because his actions were done out of a ‘sense of desperation and self protection’ rather than out of malice or for profit.

hteoh @s ph.com.sg


Wednesday, Jul 25, 2012

SINGAPORE – A psychiatrist practising at the Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre was suspended and fined for having an improper sexual relationship with his patient for over 10 years.

Dr Kong Sim Guan, also known as Sim Heng Guan, practised at The Psychiatric & Behavioural Medicine Clinic (Ang & Kong) at Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, and was found to be in a relationship with his client from 1996 to 2009.

He was suspended for three years and fined $10,000 by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) in the rare disciplinary case, reported The Straits Times.


Under SMC’s medical code and ethical guidelines, a doctor must not have a sexual relationship with a patient, or be involved in an adulterous relationship.

The patient was described by the committee as a “vulnerable” and troubled psychiatric patient experiencing marital issues.

“We are cognizant of the fact that the medical issues faced by the Patient were related to her mental well-being and as her psychiatrist, (Kong) should have been more than aware that his sexual relationship with her can only be interpreted as taking advantage of her troubled state and vulnerability, let alone exacerbating and complicating her marital problems,” the committee noted.

candicec @ sph.com.sg





Dr. Eugene Lim Ui Chong

#04-06 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre, 3 Mount Elizabeth S(228510)

+65 6737 7377


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Wednesday, Jul 18, 2012
YourHealth, AsiaOne
SINGAPORE – Thee doctors have been charged for practising without valid certificates from the Singapore Medical Council (SMC).

The Straits Times reported that the three had written to SMC to request for practising certificates and had falsely declared that they had not been involved in clinical practice before.

Gladys Wong Mei Ling, 47, was found to have illegally practised at Healthpoint Family Clinic and Surgery at Tanglin Halt Road from Jan 3 to 31.

Roy Chio Han Sin, 39, allegedly illegally practised at Dr Chio Aesthetic and Laser Centre and at Famicare Bedok Clinic in Bedok South Avenue 3 from Nov 1, 2011 to Feb 17, 2012.

Ng Hor Liang allegedly practised at at Bukit Batok West Clinic from Jan 1 to Feb 10.

If found guilty, each person can be fined up to $100,000 and jailed for 12 months.

The three are also facing charges for their false declarations, for which they can be each fined up to $10,000 and jailed for up to two years.


todayonline.com on June 19, 2012 reported that a medical doctor has been fined S$5,000 and censured by the Singapore Medical Council’s Disciplinary Committee (DC) for professional misconduct. Dr Lim Chong Hee, 46, was a Senior Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon at the National Heart Centre in 2007 when a complaint was lodged against him. He had failed to adequately record his discussion with a patient in June 2007 about a possible lobectomy and the patient’s consent to the surgical procedure in his medical records. Dr Lim pleaded guilty to the charge last month. The DC emphasised that the maintenance of proper medical records is an important aspect of medical treatment, and added that proper medical record keeping is also crucial in avoiding disputes between a doctor and his patient.

The original article can be found at todayonline.com.

SINGAPORE – A doctor who made S$266,800 from selling codeine-based cough syrup wholesale to three patients has been sentenced to seven-and-a-half months’ jail and fined S$60,000.

Ho Thong Chew, 41, was sentenced today, about a month after he pleaded guilty in June to the 35 charges.

He had sold more than 800 canisters of the cough syrup to three of his patients. The cough syrup was in turn sold to codeine abusers.

Ho’s offences were discovered after the Health Sciences Authority was alerted about the large volume of codeine-based cough syrup bought by the clinic in Ang Mo Kio between January and May last year.

The father of two had been running his own clinic, Focus Medical Group, for seven years until it was shut down recently by the Health Ministry.

District Judge Christopher Goh said a doctor’s prerogative is to heal and pointed out that Ho has caused harm instead. He added that Ho abused his position as a medical practitioner and played an active role in selling the codeine-laced syrup to reap a vast profit.

The judge added that Ho was consumed by greed and was not as naive and innocent as he put himself to be during mitigation.

URL : www.todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120720-0000136/Doctor-who-sold-cough-syrup-wholesale-jailed,-fined

SINGAPORE: A doctor has been suspended for three months and censured for professional misconduct, after he errantly prescribed drugs and behaved inappropriately with a patient.

Fifty-two-year-old Saifuddin Sidek is a registered medical practitioner and an obstetrician and gynaecologist.

He runs Sidek Clinic for Women, which is at Eastpoint in Simei.

The Singapore Medical Council (SMC) said on Friday Dr Saifuddin pleaded guilty to two charges during a disciplinary inquiry by its Disciplinary Committee (DC).

The DC acted on a complaint made on May 20, 2010.

The first charge relates to the way he prescribed benzodiazepines, which are for patients who suffer from insomnia or need short-term relief of anxiety.

The DC found Dr Saifuddin had been very lax in his prescriptions of the drug to his patient.

He had prescribed benzodiazepines to the patient on at least 14 occasions from August 2007 to April 2010, without maintaining any medical records.

He did not supervise the usage of the high dosage prescriptions or tried to taper down the dosages.

The DC found he even delivered the drugs to her personally and provided her with post-dated prescriptions through the post.

It described Dr Saifuddin’s repeated prescriptions as “cavalier and irresponsible”, given he was aware the patient’s parents were seeking to regulate her reliance on benzodiazepines.

Instead of working with the patient’s parents, Dr Saifuddin effectively undermined such efforts.

The DC said the dosages and quantities of benzodiazepines were exceedingly high and were completely unjustifiable by any clinical indication.

For this, he was suspended for three months.

Turning to the second charge of inappropriate conduct, the DC said there is nothing wrong in offering assistance to a patient but stressed a physician must observe the boundaries of a doctor-patient relationship.

It said when Dr Saifuddin started prescribing benzodiazepines to the patient after treating her as her gynaecologist, he continued a doctor-patient relationship with her.

The DC rejected Dr Saifuddin’s claim that he had developed an “avuncular social relationship” with the patient.

It found he had allowed his relationship to cloud his judgement, which resulted in his errant prescription and in him checking the patient into various hotels.

However, it noted he genuinely wanted to help the patient.

The DC also took into account his good standing, his family’s financial hardship and the testimonials tendered on his behalf.

He was censured for this charge.

The DC said while such a punishment may appear to be lenient, it’s appropriate, given the punishment of suspension in the first charge.

It noted there was no evidence of any sexual relationship between Dr Saifuddin and the patient, nor any evidence he had attempted to take advantage of the patient.

It added if there had been any sexual relationship or attempt to take advantage of the patient, it would not hesitate to strike him off the Register of Medical Practitioners or to impose a long period of suspension.

Besides the suspension and censure, the DC also ordered Dr Saifuddin to give a written undertaking to the SMC that he’ll not repeat such misconduct, as well as bear the costs and expenses of the disciplinary proceedings.

– CNA/wk

Source:  www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1187957/1/.html

Updated 07:43 PM Jul 18, 2012
SINGAPORE – Adjustments to MediShield – a basic and catastrophic insurance scheme – are set to kick in by the first quarter of next year.

Among the changes: increasing MediShield coverage for large bills by increasing yearly limits from S$50,000 to S$70,000, and lifetime limits from S$200,000 to S$300,000; and extending MediShield to cover short-stay wards at the Emergency Department and inpatient psychiatric treatment.

The age ceiling for coverage will also go up from 85 to 90. Deductibles – bills to be paid by the patient before payouts from MediShield – will also go up by S$500 for Class B2 and C hospital bills, to S$2,000 and S$1,500 respectively.

In turn, premiums will need to go up. According to the Ministry of Health (MOH), after the Government Medisave top-up, those aged 21 to 60 will see their monthly premiums go up by S$1 to S$5. The rest will see premiums decrease.

The MOH also proposed other changes to MediShield which are up for public feedback – the idea to extend coverage to newborns with congenital conditions. The MOH said this will cost Singaporeans aged 20 and below about S$1 more a month in premiums.

To keep MediShield premiums affordable, the Government had announced a one-time Medisave top-up of S$400 during Budget 2012, as well as permanent Medisave top-ups to the elderly under the GST Voucher Scheme. MediShield premiums are paid for via Singaporeans’ Medisave accounts. These are part of the aim to double State healthcare spending to S$8 billion over the next five years.

The public may send feedback to moh_info@moh.gov.sg.

Source: todayonline.com/Singapore/EDC120718-0000132/MOH-announces-enhancements-to-MediShield




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Maternity Packages in Gleneagles Hospital 

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Gleneagles Patient Assistance Centre (GPAC)
24-Hours Hotline:6575 7575
Email: gpac@parkway.sg Website: www.gleneagles.com.sg


In talking to other stroke patients, one thing that was particularly remarkable to me was the very different reactions people had to a disability. I spoke to my occupational therapist about it, and he remarked that disability is never a purely physical condition, but is a combination of actual physical disability and the person’s psychological response to the disability.

For me, I lost almost all sensory-motor function on the left half of my body. It was so bad I had trouble just sitting up straight after my surgery, and standing up was out of the question.

To some extent, functions can recover as the brain recruits non-damaged areas to replace lost functions through a process called neuro-plasticity, but that process has its limits, and there are early indicators of the possible extent of recovery.

About 2 months after my stroke, the senior consultant in charge of my rehabilitation team at the community hospital held my left hand as he gave me the bad news.

“You have basically a 0% chance of recovering dexterity in your left hand,” he said, solemnly.

I didn’t know how to respond, so I just said, “Ok, loh.” [For those who aren’t local, “loh” and other words like “lah and “leh” are modal particles in Singaporean slang–meaningless words in themselves, but which flavour the spoken sentence and highlight the mood of the speaker. In this case, “loh” indicated resigned acceptance.]

“‘Ok, loh’?” he asked. “That’s all you have to say?”

“What do you expect me to do? Cry?”

In reality though, the truth only sank in slowly over the next few months as I came to accept that there were certain things I would never be able to do again, like my favourite pastime of riding my motorcycle.

In coping psychologically with the physical disability, I was fortunate to have inherited a “keep calm and carry on” attitude from my father, which meant I didn’t spend too much time agonizing over what I couldn’t do and the physical functions I had lost, and more time figuring out how I could do as much as I used to be able to do.

My physical disabilities

My actual physical physical disabilities (and current extent of recovery, one year later) are:

  • Loss of use of left leg (currently mostly community ambulatory, albeit with a walking stick).
  • Loss of use of left hand (currently able to perform gross movements using the shoulder and elbow, but no real useful functions because I am unable to open my fingers; only clench them).
  • Weakness in left trunk muscles (currently still slouching more than before, but otherwise able to maintain an upright posture).
  • Slack facial muscles on the left half (currently still unable to perform some facial expressions, although I’ve stopped dribbling when I eat–what a relief).
  • Extensive loss of sensation (touch, temperature), proprioception, and kinesthesia (often confused with proprioception, but is more accurately the sense of motion). I’m lucky not to have lost the sense that my left limbs are my own, but the sense of connection and ownership is definitely weaker than for the unaffected right side (currently, some (still very vague) sensation is starting to recover from proximal (closer to the body’s centre line) to distal (further away)).

Coping strategies

I’d like to list down a few coping strategies that were particularly helpful for me that might prove helpful to anyone else in a similar situation:

  • Accept that a terrible thing happened, whatever the cause. Speak to whoever you believe in and then accept that you have to move on. For me, I wrote in my second post “Why Bad Things Happen to Good People” that I was an atheist, so my coping strategy of accepting it as a case of a bad roll of universal dice might not be for everyone.
  • Nevertheless, don’t internalize other people’s perception of yourself. If other people look down on you as a result of your disability, it is a reflection of them, not you. When I was studying in the States, an American-born Chinese asked me about racism and if I would be offended if someone called me a “chink”. I told her no, because that just shows the person who uttered the phrase to be a racist asshole, and I would pity him rather than get angry. The same applies here. You’re going to run into some inconsiderate people, but you shouldn’t let that affect how you feel about yourself.
  • Be prepared to fight for every inch of recovery, but believe that things will get better. Dealing with disability is tough, and trying to recover whatever function you can is even tougher. Neuro-plasticity is helped by exercise. In the days after I was first discharged home, it took me half an hour to limp the hundred metres from one apartment block in my estate to the next, and being able to ever walk normally again seemed hopeless. I kept trying to walk and also practise climbing the stairs, and within the month I was climbing 25 floors’ of stairs up and then down again. Fortunately, having survived being in a Guards unit while in NS, I had a pretty high threshold for physical suffering. So while the exercise was exhausting, I kept telling myself that at least it wasn’t as bad as during NS.
  • Be nice to your caregivers and your therapists. A bit of politeness makes it easier for people to go that extra bit for you, and however bad it is for you, recognize that the people around you can suffer too.
  • Participate actively in your own therapy. Nobody knows what is most important to you like yourself. If your therapy isn’t targeting something that you want think is useful, speak up. Each person’s lifestyle is so different that it’s impossible for therapists to be able to design an effective therapy plan without your input. People tend to over-estimate how much others can read their minds. Make sure this isn’t a mistake you make. During my own therapy sessions, I usually give a running commentary on which movements I find difficult, how I’m feeling mentally and physically, and this has been very helpful to my therapists in helping me target the things I want to do.
  • If you’re lucky enough to still have a job, talk to your supervisors honestly about the changes to your workplace and workload that you need, but also be mindful that he/she has to be fair to other employees as well.
The above are the main coping strategies I can think of, but feel free to ask me (through the comments or email) specific questions if you have any.

Source: http://hawyee.com/roadtorecovery/2012/07/15/dealing-with-disability/


Dr Yeo Kim Teck
Apple Eye Centre
#11-01 Paragon Medical Centre
6235 7000

Dr Khoo Boo Kian

Eye Clinic and Optometry Centre for Children
6887 3797
#06-01/02 Paragon Medical Centre


Dr Law Ngai Mun
Eye Clinic Singapore International
#16-11 Paragon Medical Centre
6734 9766


Dr Bobby Cheng Ching Li
Singapore Eye & Vision
#15-07/08 Paragon Medical Centre
6836 0900


Dr Marc Tay
The Lasik Surgery Clinic
#13-01/06 Paragon Medical Centre
6836 1000

Aglow Baby & Child Specialist Clinic
101 Thomson Rd #02-09 United Square Singapore 307591


Bishan Baby & Child Clinic
Blk 502 Bishan St 11 #01-350 Singapore 570502 Tel: 63537188


Bishan Children Clinic
Blk 279 Bishan St 24 #01-50 Singapore 570279 Tel: 64533933


Children’s Clinic
BLK 177 Toa Payoh Central #01-160 Singapore 310177 Tel: 63540662


Chye Children Clinic
Blk 54 Toa Payoh Lor 5 #01-190 Singapore 310054 Tel: 62521801


Kids Clinic @ Bishan
Blk 116 Bishan Street 12 #01-28 Bishan View Singapore 570116 General Enquiries: –


Paediatric Centre
339 Thomson Rd #03-05/06 Thomson Medical Centre Singapore 307677 General Enquiries: 62595913


Paediatric Centre (Bishan)
Blk 279 Bishan Street 24 #01-50 Singapore 570279 General Enquiries: 64533933


Singapore Baby & Child Clinic (Sbcc Clinic Pte Ltd)
Blk 726 Ang Mo Kio Ave 6 #01-4154/4156 Singapore 560726 General Enquiries: 64568874






The following orthodontists are members of the Association of Orthodontists Singapore. They are required to have higher qualifications in orthodontics.  Orthodontists are qualified specialists for prescribing the use of braces on your teeth.  Please read more about orthodontics and braces here.

Dr Ang Bak Chye
#06-35 Lucky Plaza
304 Orchard Road
Singapore 238863
Tel: 6235 9976
Fax: 62359380


Dr Ang Poh Kang
@Just Braces.Dental Centre
9 Penang Road
#07-05 Park Mall
Singapore 238459
Tel: 6338 7580
Fax: 6338 7549


Dr Susan Boey
Q & M Dental Group
180 Kitchener Road
#B1-13/15 City Square Mall
Singapore 208539
Tel: 6509 1133


Dr Boey Pui Yunn
Neuglow Dental @ Somerset
111 Somerset Road
Singapore 238164
Tel : 6732 2237
Fax : 6735 3498


Dr Canon Chong
OrthoSmile Dental Practice
Novena Medical Centre@Square 2
10 Sinaran Drive
Singapore 307506
Tel: 63976880
Fax: 63976811


Dr Chan Feng Yi
National Dental Centre
5 Second Hospital Avenue
Singapore 168938
Tel: 63248802


Dr Chang Hui Sing
Thomson Dental Surgeons Pte Ltd
290 Orchard Road
#06-01 Paragon
Singapore 238859
Tel: 6737 9831


Dr Serene Chee
Bites and Braces
19 Tanglin Road #06-12
Tanglin Shopping Centre
Singapore 247909
Tel: 67378684


Dr Alfred Cheng
Alfred Cheng Orthodontic Clinic
3 Mount Elizabeth #03-03
Singapore 228510
Tel: 67355635


Dr Eileen Ching
The Smile Division Dental Surgeons @Orchard
304 Orchard Road
#02-105 Lucky Plaza
Singapore 238863
Tel: 6738 7990


Dr Chong Yea Hwe
T32 Dental Centre
1 Orchard Boulevard
Camden Medical Centre
Singapore 248649
Tel: (65) 6733 1388


Dr Chong Kim Cheong
Tooth Art Dental Centre
501 Orchard Road
#04-04A Wheelock Place
Singapore 238880


Dr Sebastian Chow
3 Mount Elizabeth
#03-08 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
Singapore 228510
Tel: 67384351


Dr Chua Ai Lian
290 Orchard Road
# 11-06 Paragon
Singapore 238859
Tel: 6738 9332


Dr Djeng Shih Kien
Ko Djeng Gleneagles Pte Ltd
Orchard Medical Specialist Centre
304 Orchard Road
#05-15 Lucky Plaza
Singapore 238863
Tel: 6734 3163


Dr Heng Aik Jin
Beacon Bright Dental Surgeons
9 Penang Road
# 07 – 20 Park Mall
Singapore 238459


Dr Heng Jee Kuan
Novena Dental Aesthetic Practice Pte Ltd
Center for Aesthetic Dentistry
10 Sinaran Drive #09-34
Novena Medical Center
Singapore 307506
Tel: 6397 7097


Dr Henry Ho
Thomson Specialist Dentistry
8 Sinaran Drive
Novena Specialist Centre
Singapore 307470
Tel: +65-62551771


Dr Ho Kar Kaye
19 Tanglin Road
#06-23 Tanglin Shopping Centre
Singapore 247909
Tel: 6737 6628


Dr Hong Yong Huat
360 Orchard Road #01-14
Singapore 238869
Tel: 67346522


Dr Hwang Yee Cheau
The Penthouse
391B Orchard Road
#26-01 Ngee Ann City Tower B
Singapore 238874
Tel: 6737 9011


Dr Kaan Sheung Kin
The Oral Care Centre
10 Sinran Drive #10-29
Novena Medical Centre @ Square 2
Singapore 307506
Tel: 63976990


Dr Koh Chay Hui
290 Orchard Road
#09-16/17 Paragon
Singapore 238559
Tel: 68380922


Dr Koh Poh Leong Kelvin
OrthoSmile Dental Practice
Novena Medical Centre@Square 2
10 Sinaran Drive
Singapore 307506
Tel: 63976880


Dr Catherine Lee
Camden Medical Centre
1 Orchard Boulevard #06-05
Singapore 248649
Tel: 68359571


Dr Lee Pheng Hean Bryce
391-B Orchard Road #08-09
Ngee Ann City Tower B
Singapore 238874
Tel: 67372777


Dr Geraldine Lee
The Oral Care Centre
10 Sinran Drive #10-29
Novena Medical Centre @ Square 2
Singapore 307506
Tel: 63976990


Dr David Lee Yew Keong
Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
3 Mount Elizabeth
Singapore 228510
Tel: 6734 0007


Dr Leong Se Mean
Q & M Toa Payoh
Blk 177 Toa Payoh Central
Singapore 310177


Dr Arthur Lim Chong Yang
The Dental Profile
19 Tanglin Road
#05-24 Tanglin Shopping Centre
Singapore 247909
Tel: 6835 0322


Dr Lim Hong Meng
Mount Elizabeth Orthodontic Clinic
3 Mount Elizabeth
#10-03 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
Singapore 228510
Tel: 6327 2237


Dr Lim Janee
Raffles Dental
585 North Bridge Road
Raffles Hospital #13-00
Singapore 188770


Dr Lim Wee Sang
Pinnacle Dental Group
10 Collyer Quay #07-01
Ocean Building
Singapore 049315
Tel: 65320282


Dr Lo Tong Soon
Ho Kee Hai & Partners
290 Orchard Road
Paragon Medical Centre
Singapore 238859
Tel: 62357498


Dr Loh Kai Woh
#04-125 Far East Plaza
14 Scotts Road
Singapore 228213
Tel: 6733 2268


Dr Sharon Loh
Epismile Inc Dental Group
301 Upper Thomson Road
#02-30 Thomson Plaza
Singapore 574408
Tel: 65540552


Dr Loh Eu-Min Eugene Lester
#08-05, The Heeren,
260 Orchard Road,
Singapore 238855
Tel: 67377375


Dr Loh Soo Ann
SA Loh Dental Surgery
80 Marine Parade Road
# 05-23 Parkway Parade
Singapore 449269


Dr. Low Hwee Hiang
Twin City Medical and Dental Clinic,
Ngee Ann City, Tower B,
391B Orchard Road,
#08-07, Singapore 238874


Dr Low Gim Hong
The Smile Division Dental Surgery
10 Choa Chu Kang Ave 4
#01-02 Choa Chu Kang MRT
Singapore 689810
Tel: 64623349


Dr Lye Thim Loke
#05-39/43 Tanglin Shopping Centre
19 Tanglin Road
Singapore 247909
Tel: 6737 3833


Dr Mok Tong Bee
Tiong Bahru Dental Surgery
302 Tiong Bahru Road
#06-04 Tiong Bahru Plaza
Singapore 168732
Tel: 62713083


Dr Geraldine Oh
Smileworks Pte Ltd
290 Orchard Rd
#11-11/12, Paragon
Singapore 238859
Tel: 62389318


Dr Ong Hoe Boon
KO Djeng Gleneagles Pte Ltd
304 Orchard Road, #05-15, Lucky Plaza,
Orchard Medical Specialists’ Centre
Singapore 238863
Tel: (65) 67343163


Dr Dale Phan Kok Leong
Smile Avenue Dentistry
10 Sinaran Drive #11-18
Novena Medical Center @ Square 2
Singapore 307506
Tel : 63972818


Dr Poon Kah Chai
290 Orchard Road
#09-05/06 Paragon
Singapore 238859
Tel: 67345155


Dr Poon Kee Hoon
Twin City Medical and Dental Clinic
Ngee Ann City Tower B
391B Orchard Road Unit 08-07
Singapore 238874
Tel: 62352511


Dr Poon Kee Hwang
Neuglow  Dental Suites
111 Somerset Road
Singapore 238164
Tel : 6732 2237


Dr Zulfikri Salikin
163 Tanglin Road
#03-20 Tanglin Mall
Singapore 247933
Tel: 68362262


Dr Shue Yoke Shien Jennie
#04-28 Eastpoint Mall
3 Simei Street 6
Singapore 528833
Tel: 6787 2032


Dr Tan Hwee Hiang
Aesthetic Dental Surgery
9 Penang Road #07-01
Park Mall
Singapore 238459
Tel: 63333233


Dr Tan Kok Liang
Embrace Dental Surgery
360 Orchard Road
#01-14 International Building
Singapore 238869
Tel: 6235 6325


Dr Tan Lam Seng
A Line Dental Surgery
1 Coleman Street
#03-01 The Adelphi
Singapore 179803
Tel: 68372722


Dr Ronald Tan Hwa Ann
Blk 506 Tampines Central 1
Singapore 520506
Tel: 67882262


Dr Tan Tzee Jen
Scotts Dental Centre
1 Scotts Road #15-01, Shaw Centre
Singapore 228208
Tel: 68870380


Dr Vivien Tan
Khoo Teck Puat Hospital
Tower C, Level 6
90, Yishun Central
Singapore 768828


Dr Tan It Sing, Audrey
Mount Elizabeth Orthodontic Clinic
#10-03 Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
3 Mount Elizabeth
Singapore 228510
Tel: 6327 2237


Dr Anna Tang
Royce Dental Surgery
Block 328, #01-206,
Clementi Ave 2,
Singapore 120328
Tel – 67743586


Dr Margaret Tang
Tangs Dental Group
6 Napier Road
#06-07 Gleneagles Medical Centre
Singapore 258499
Tel: 6479 9883


Dr Tng Thiam Huat
The Penthouse
391B Orchard Road
#26-01 Ngee Ann City Tower B
Singapore 238874
Tel: 6737 9011


Dr Stefan Vaz
Blk 121, Pasir Ris St 11,
Singapore 510121
Tel: 6584 5836


Dr Wee Teng Yau
Alfred Cheng Orthodontic Clinic
3 Mount Elizabeth #03-03
Singapore 228510
Tel: 67355635


Dr Wong Dai Chong Harris
Q & M Dental Surgery
450 Clementi Ave 3
Singapore 120450
Tel: 67782768


Dr Florence Wong Liping
Dr. K.S. Wong & Partners Dental Surgery Pte Ltd
5 Koek Road #06-10
Cuppage Plaza
Singapore 228796
Tel: 62358421


Dr VicPearly Wong
T32 Dental Centre
1 Orchard Boulevard
Camden Medical Centre
Singapore 248649
Tel: (65) 6733 1388


Dr Patricia Yeong
Specialist Dental Group
Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre
3, Mount Elizabeth, #08-08/ #08-10
Singapore 228510
Tel: 67349393





Related post: List of Orthodontists in Singapore

What is Orthodontics?

Orthodontics is a specialised branch of dentistry. Orthodontic treatment corrects irregularities of the teeth or developing jaws and can improve the function and appearance of the mouth and face. Orthodontic appliances (braces) are used to straighten the teeth.

Why choose orthodontic treatment?

Any orthodontic problem may be classified as a malocclusion, or “bad bite.” The following problems may be helped or minimized with proper orthodontic treatment:

  • Misaligned, crooked, or crowed teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Extra teeth
  • An overbite
  • An underbite
  • An openbite
  • Misaligned or incorrect jaw position
  • A disorder of the jaw joint

At what age do braces become appropriate?

Moving and correcting the alignment of the teeth follows the same biological and physical process no matter what the age. However, an adult mouth must overcome already positioned facial bones and jaw structure. Thus, overcoming most types of malocclusions may require more than one type of orthodontic treatment for adults. In most cases, the ideal age for braces and other orthodontic treatments is between 10 and 14 years of age, although people of any age can benefit from treatment.

What are the different types of braces available?

Braces, also called fixed orthodontic appliances, generally come in three varieties.  The cost of the braces depend on the brand and type recommended by your dentist.

  • Brackets, metal or plastic, clear or tooth-colored, that are bonded to teeth
  • Lingual-type brackets that attach to the back of teeth, hidden from view
  • Bands that cover most of the teeth with metal bands that wrap around the teeth

Related: Eye Specialists Clinics  . Lasik Surgery . Eye Clinics in Paragon Medical

Signs that point to cataracts:

  • Cloudy or blurry vision.
  • Colors seem faded.
  • Glare. Headlights, lamps, or sunlight may appear too bright. A halo may appear around lights.
  • Poor night vision.
  • Double vision or multiple images in one eye. (This symptom may clear as the cataract gets larger.)
  • Frequent prescription changes in your eyeglasses or contact lenses.

Youtube video on Cataract Surgery Procedure

Cataract surgery is a procedure to remove the lens of your eye and, in most cases, replace it with an artificial lens. Cataract surgery is used to treat a cataract — the clouding of the normally clear lens of your eye. Cataract surgery is performed by an eye doctor / ophthalmologist on an outpatient basis, which means you don’t have to stay in the hospital after the surgery. Cataract surgery is very common and is generally a safe procedure.There are two types of cataract surgery. Your doctor can explain the differences and help determine which is better for you:


  1. Phacoemulsification, or phaco. A small incision is made on the side of the cornea, the clear, dome-shaped surface that covers the front of the eye. Your doctor inserts a tiny probe into the eye. This device emits ultrasound waves that soften and break up the lens so that it can be removed by suction. Most cataract surgery today is done by phacoemulsification, also called “small incision cataract surgery.”
  2. Extracapsular surgery. Your doctor makes a longer incision on the side of the cornea and removes the cloudy core of the lens in one piece. The rest of the lens is removed by suction.


After the natural lens has been removed, it often is replaced by an artificial lens, called an intraocular lens (IOL). An IOL is a clear, plastic lens that requires no care and becomes a permanent part of your eye. Light is focused clearly by the IOL onto the retina, improving your vision. You will not feel or see the new lens.Some people cannot have an IOL. They may have another eye disease or have problems during surgery. For these patients, a soft contact lens, or glasses that provide high magnification, may be suggested.

The following is a table of cataract surgery cost in Singapore hospitals.

  • Day Surgery (Private Patients with no subsidy)

    Hospital Volume  Average Length Of Stay (days)  50th Percentile Bill Size ($) 90th Percentile Bill Size ($)
    Changi General Hospital 174 1.0 2,942 3,545
    Gleneagles Hospital 1,911 1.0 4,891 6,634
    Khoo Teck Puat Hospital 175 1.0 3,093 4,293
    Mount Alvernia Hospital 1,111 1.0 3,512 4,428
    Mount Elizabeth Hospital 1,311 1.0 4,868 7,224
    National University Hospital 601 1.0 3,765 5,266
    Parkway East Hospital 332 1.0 3,898 5,037
    Raffles Hospital 102 1.0 4,541 6,047
    Singapore National Eye Centre 3,793 1.0 3,093 3,968
    Tan Tock Seng Hospital 1,645 1.0 2,860 3,895

Related: Lasik clinics – Paragon

SINGAPORE: Some 100 people – mostly Singaporeans – have gone for a new laser-based treatment for presbyopia (or “lao hua yan”), since it was launched here six months ago.

Presbyopia is a common eye condition that affects people above 40.

57-year-old Hedy Lim, who had been suffering from presbyopia, never got used to wearing reading glasses, even though she had been doing so for the past 15 years.

“My hobbies are actually cooking and also flower arrangement…And especially the cooking recipes right, so it will slow down your process if you need to put on your glasses. Sometimes you cannot find your glasses, that’s where I find that it hinders my life,” she said.

Six months ago, she found a solution to ditch her reading glasses, by going for a laser-based treatment for her presbyopia.

The procedure, called IntraCor, is currently only offered in Europe and Asia, as it is not FDA-approved for the US.

It joins a series of treatments for presbyopia already available here. Other options include lens implants, which involves inserting a tiny polymer material inside the cornea.

For patients like Hedy, the draw of IntraCor is that it is minimally invasive.

Dr Lee Hung Ming, a Medical Director and Ophthalmologist with Parkway Eye Centre and Gleneagles Hospital, said: “IntraCor is a new option to treat presbyopia. It is a femtosecond (one quadrillionth of a second) technology that delivers multiple quick and precise laser to the centre part of the cornea, without cutting any cornea epithelium. This will change the surface and the curvature of the cornea so that the presbyopia is corrected.”

IntraCor is also different from another laser-based treatment, LASIK.

“Unlike LASIK, IntraCor is mainly used to treat presbyopia, whereas LASIK is used to treat myopia. LASIK involves the cutting of the cornea flap – then we lift up the flap, we do the laser to flatten the cornea. Whereas IntraCor does not involve cutting of the flap, nor any external wound.”

“The entire procedure takes only five minutes, and the laser itself takes only 20 seconds to complete. Therefore, the recovery is very fast. Many of my patients could even go jogging, exercise or swimming on the following day.”

Even though IntraCor is minimally invasive, there are still some side effects.

“Some patients would experience seeing haloes and glare at night. Fortunately, most of these symptoms would disappear six months after the surgery. Some patients would complain that the far vision may be a bit affected because IntraCor may induce about 50 to 75 degrees of myopia. But in general, most patients could tolerate this difference,” said Dr Lee.

Dr Lee added that not everyone is suitable to undergo IntraCor. This includes patients with cataract, glaucoma, or overly thin cornea. Those who have undergone LASIK before are also not eligible.

Dr Lee also said the procedure is relatively new. As such there is no data to prove it can permanently correct presbyopia, especially since presbyopia is an ongoing condition.


Source: channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1108816/1/.html