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GP appointments/hospital treatment

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britishblondie
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GP appointments/hospital treatment

Postby britishblondie » Sun, 13 Jul 2014 7:41 pm

Hi all

I move out to Singapore in 2 months and am trying to start getting organised! Coming from the UK i am used to the NHS system!

How does healthcare work in SG? I payed for my health checks as a one off but with regards to doctors appointments A/E visits etc is it best/possible to pay as you go, or is insurance needed?

Thank in advance everyone!

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the lynx
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Re: GP appointments/hospital treatment

Postby the lynx » Mon, 14 Jul 2014 9:25 am

britishblondie wrote:Hi all

I move out to Singapore in 2 months and am trying to start getting organised! Coming from the UK i am used to the NHS system!

How does healthcare work in SG? I payed for my health checks as a one off but with regards to doctors appointments A/E visits etc is it best/possible to pay as you go, or is insurance needed?

Thank in advance everyone!


Check if your employer uses group health insurance for all staff. Under such insurance, your GP is for free and your A/E or specialist are free/subsidised to some extent. If you do, go for it.

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britishblondie
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Postby britishblondie » Mon, 14 Jul 2014 1:36 pm

No, no perks with my job. I am self employed within a non corporate company

So what would be my best bet?

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taxico
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Re: GP appointments/hospital treatment

Postby taxico » Wed, 30 Jul 2014 10:58 pm

britishblondie wrote:Hi all

I move out to Singapore in 2 months and am trying to start getting organised! Coming from the UK i am used to the NHS system!

How does healthcare work in SG? I payed for my health checks as a one off but with regards to doctors appointments A/E visits etc is it best/possible to pay as you go, or is insurance needed?

Thank in advance everyone!


after hours non-life threatening emergencies - check out the list of 24 hour clinics on the ministry of health website or the post on this forum (i can't remember where the link is, might be a sticky within LIVING IN SINGAPORE - near the top)

going to a "public" (restructured) hospital for A&E is expensive (by my standards) and a waste of medical resources. not to mention it's a LONG LONG wait. LONG LOOONG wait.

i usually have good experience/results at a not-for-profit catholic-mission/run Mt Alvernia Hospital's A&E (24 hours, usually a short'ish wait). i am not affiliated to them, nor do i work for them. but if you live near them, i would advise heading over as they have a decent range of facilities and on-call medical staff.

if you have a real emergency, call 995 (national emergency line to SCDF) and EMS will take you to the closest trauma centre - this may or may not be a medical establishment closest to your location. the (SCDF) paramedics will check for medical alert bracelets... if you do not have a "real" emergency (arms falling off, heavily squirting neck, etc) you will be charged $200.

if you have a less serious emergency but need an ambulance service call 1777. yes, you will be charged and usually in cash before a private ambulance renders service. sometimes a taxi may be more convenient or a little faster than a private ambulance.

singaporeans, in general, do not give way to blue lit/emergency vehicles. if you hear a siren from an SCDF ambulance, it's always/only because someone's dying or dead within.

without insurance, you pay everything out of pocket at unsubsidized rates. check out www.moh.gov.sg for more details. what you pay is (generally) what you get, so don't fret too much. cash, cheque, credit, debit or NETS (EFTPOS) cards are all accepted.

payment is usually made after outpatient treatment. if you require inpatient treatment at a public hospital then you will probably be asked to first foot a deposit (the excess which is refunded at the end of your stay) before you are admitted - if you are not in a condition to make payment you will of course still be treated but your NOK will be requested to make payment of that deposit when he/she shows up.

for your common flu and cough... the nicest GP nearest to you will suit you sufficiently. go during working hours and the total price of a consult and medication should generally not exceed $45.

it should be made known here that you are need not purchase medication at your GP's clinic/surgery (almost all GPs have their own pharmacy) - you may ask instead for a written prescription and get it selectively filled at a pharmacy elsewhere. a list is available at MOH's website. it is not common/the norm to get a repeat script in singapore but you can certainly buy less than the prescribed quantity. medication purchased are not refundable.

it is, however, common practice for GPs to dispense the "required" prescription to you through his/her own money making pharmacy. if you feel your bill is excessive or overpriced, you may ask for a detailed breakdown of the bill. all clinics/hospitals have a fee table you may consult prior to committing to seeing a doctor (or prior to the doctor accepting you as his patient). please don't ask for the breakdown of a $10-$20 consultation fee as it is not possible to give one.

you do not need to seek a vacancy (or plead with the clinic to accept you as a patient) or make an appointment to see a GP in singapore. walking into an empty clinic will usually be the quickest.

if you need specialist (including services like orthotics or dental) treatment at public hospital, etc... you will need to head to MOH's website for specific details. you will need a doctor's (any doctor) referral letter. to visit a private specialist/clinic, you just call up and make an appointment directly without a need for such a letter, although it would be wise to bring some films or letter along. be prepared to wait - bring a sweater along as it will be unusually cold in most private specialists'.

if you have further questions whose answers are not found at MOH's website, check back in here... but most of your questions would be answered there.

good luck!
Aut viam ad caelum inveniam aut faciam

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taxico
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Postby taxico » Wed, 30 Jul 2014 11:22 pm

emergency services are red in singapore, not blue... although i think blue is exclusively (albeit very selectively) used by the "rozzers."
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Postby singapore eagle » Thu, 31 Jul 2014 8:51 am

Private health insurance is essential here, in my opinion. Without it, one accident and a lengthy hospital stay could ruin you financially.

Note that the standard policies do not normally cover GP visits.

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Postby imogenben » Fri, 15 Aug 2014 11:10 am

There are lots of hospitalization insurance policies on offer for different budgets - mostly a few hundred dollars a year. But generally, the lower the premium, the higher your out of pocket co-payment when you do get sick. Full blown healthcare plans from BUPA etc will cost a few thousand dollars a year.

GP visits. These are usually affordable (less than $100) depending on how posh the clinic is and the location. And unlike the NHS, you do not have to make an appointment and you actually get to see the doctor the same day.

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Re: GP appointments/hospital treatment

Postby PNGMK » Fri, 15 Aug 2014 11:16 am

taxico wrote:
britishblondie wrote:Hi all

I move out to Singapore in 2 months and am trying to start getting organised! Coming from the UK i am used to the NHS system!

How does healthcare work in SG? I payed for my health checks as a one off but with regards to doctors appointments A/E visits etc is it best/possible to pay as you go, or is insurance needed?

Thank in advance everyone!


after hours non-life threatening emergencies - check out the list of 24 hour clinics on the ministry of health website or the post on this forum (i can't remember where the link is, might be a sticky within LIVING IN SINGAPORE - near the top)

going to a "public" (restructured) hospital for A&E is expensive (by my standards) and a waste of medical resources. not to mention it's a LONG LONG wait. LONG LOOONG wait.

i usually have good experience/results at a not-for-profit catholic-mission/run Mt Alvernia Hospital's A&E (24 hours, usually a short'ish wait). i am not affiliated to them, nor do i work for them. but if you live near them, i would advise heading over as they have a decent range of facilities and on-call medical staff.

if you have a real emergency, call 995 (national emergency line to SCDF) and EMS will take you to the closest trauma centre - this may or may not be a medical establishment closest to your location. the (SCDF) paramedics will check for medical alert bracelets... if you do not have a "real" emergency (arms falling off, heavily squirting neck, etc) you will be charged $200.

if you have a less serious emergency but need an ambulance service call 1777. yes, you will be charged and usually in cash before a private ambulance renders service. sometimes a taxi may be more convenient or a little faster than a private ambulance.

singaporeans, in general, do not give way to blue lit/emergency vehicles. if you hear a siren from an SCDF ambulance, it's always/only because someone's dying or dead within.

without insurance, you pay everything out of pocket at unsubsidized rates. check out www.moh.gov.sg for more details. what you pay is (generally) what you get, so don't fret too much. cash, cheque, credit, debit or NETS (EFTPOS) cards are all accepted.

payment is usually made after outpatient treatment. if you require inpatient treatment at a public hospital then you will probably be asked to first foot a deposit (the excess which is refunded at the end of your stay) before you are admitted - if you are not in a condition to make payment you will of course still be treated but your NOK will be requested to make payment of that deposit when he/she shows up.

for your common flu and cough... the nicest GP nearest to you will suit you sufficiently. go during working hours and the total price of a consult and medication should generally not exceed $45.

it should be made known here that you are need not purchase medication at your GP's clinic/surgery (almost all GPs have their own pharmacy) - you may ask instead for a written prescription and get it selectively filled at a pharmacy elsewhere. a list is available at MOH's website. it is not common/the norm to get a repeat script in singapore but you can certainly buy less than the prescribed quantity. medication purchased are not refundable.

it is, however, common practice for GPs to dispense the "required" prescription to you through his/her own money making pharmacy. if you feel your bill is excessive or overpriced, you may ask for a detailed breakdown of the bill. all clinics/hospitals have a fee table you may consult prior to committing to seeing a doctor (or prior to the doctor accepting you as his patient). please don't ask for the breakdown of a $10-$20 consultation fee as it is not possible to give one.

you do not need to seek a vacancy (or plead with the clinic to accept you as a patient) or make an appointment to see a GP in singapore. walking into an empty clinic will usually be the quickest.

if you need specialist (including services like orthotics or dental) treatment at public hospital, etc... you will need to head to MOH's website for specific details. you will need a doctor's (any doctor) referral letter. to visit a private specialist/clinic, you just call up and make an appointment directly without a need for such a letter, although it would be wise to bring some films or letter along. be prepared to wait - bring a sweater along as it will be unusually cold in most private specialists'.

if you have further questions whose answers are not found at MOH's website, check back in here... but most of your questions would be answered there.

good luck!


Taxico earns a gold star.


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