ST Forum Feb 25, 2006Mr Wang just wishes to make one minor point (not that it is really relevant to the real discussion). The good doctor mentioned:
Clinic did not overcharge patient
THERE are two issues in the letter by Mdm Gan Siok Wah in 'High prices for common drugs in HDB heartland' (ST, Feb 21).
First, the alleged overcharging. I would like to clarify that the $80 bill includes both the consultation fee and the medication prescribed to her daughter.
Her daughter was billed $22 for consultation fee for a visit at 9.20pm, when the Singapore Medical Association's recommendation to all clinics is $25 to $55 for consultation between 9pm and midnight.
With regard to the five tablets of Klacid MR 500mg costing $37, the price charged at our clinic adheres closely to the recommended retail price set by Abbott Laboratories (S) Pte Ltd. Mdm Gan is at liberty to confirm the price with them at customer.services.sg@ abbot.com.
Second, unnecessarily expensive medication.
As Mdm Gan has chosen to breach doctor-patient confidentiality by going public with her daughter's medical condition, I would like to highlight the fact that she omits to mention that her daughter had the symptoms for five days prior to the consultation in my clinic and that she had been treated elsewhere for similar complaints without improvement.
It is medically prudent to treat a patient with second line medication if the patient shows no improvement after treatment with first line medication. This was why her daughter was prescribed such medication by our clinic.
I stand by the fact that our clinic did not overcharge Mdm Gan. Nor was her daughter given any unnecessary treatment.
I would be most grateful if you can publish this to clarify the misconception that Mdm Gan's letter has created in the minds of the public.
Dr Low Jin Kheng
Street 11 Clinic
As Mdm Gan has chosen to breach doctor-patient confidentiality by going public with her daughter's medical condition, I would like to highlight the fact that she omits to mention that her daughter had the symptoms for five days prior to the consultation in my clinic and that she had been treated elsewhere for similar complaints without improvement.Actually Mdm Gan didn't breach any confidentiality. In the doctor-patient relationship, the duty of confidentiality is on the part of the doctor, not the patient (nor the patient's guardian).