Asking this because my mother, a member of the Pioneer Generation, just got a letter from the director, healthcare finance division, Ministry of Health, informing her that the subsidy for PGs doesn’t apply to private patients using specialist outpatient clinics (SOC) at our public hospitals.
If mum wishes to enjoy the subsidy, the director said, then she should ask the specialist outpatient clinic she’s been using for help. She is also reminded once she switches to subsidised SOC, she won’t be able to choose her own doctor.
Then I just heard Dr Amy Khor, the MOH’s Senior Minister of State, suggesting on TV news that those who want to get subsidised SOC should go to their Polyclinic or their GP for the referral.
Hello, I thought. Why make things more complicated than they need be for elderly sick folks?
Why not just allow those in the Pioneer Generation who want to remain private patients at SOC get a subsidy too but capped at $28.50 — the same amount that they are allowed when they go to see their GP.
This way, it would save much time and hassle for all on both sides of the subsidy — those receiving it and those giving it.
I am sure those PG-ers who have been using private SOCs would welcome the subsidy — which isn’t a lot compared to what consultants and senior consultants at public hospitals already charge.
But it would be a very nice gesture and affirms that the nation really values the Pioneer Generation, whether they have made it or not!