Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Dr.T's view of Singapore General Elections

Dear Friends,
My good friend Dr. T has written to the traditional media's forum page and is awaiting publication ( or not). He has asked me to post it here too.
I am more than happy to do so as I mentioned in my blog profile that even doctors have opinions and views about various aspects of Singapore and these do count.
Dr. T is a prominent doctor that many will recognise from his medical work as well as his non-medical work. He (maybe more than others) has done much to enhance the image of Singapore Medicine.

Dr Huang Shoou Chyuan

Dr. T's Letter (unabridged):

Dear Editor,

I am a medical doctor by profession.

Very often, the job of a doctor is very much that of an interpreter; I interpret the “language” ( symptoms ) of the body to the person. True healing and intervention can only take place effectively when the patient listens to the interpretation and agrees to the treatment.

How good an interpreter would determine how good a doctor he is.

Just like a patient complaining of dizziness but is walking around with a blood pressure of 200/120 mmHg.

He brushed off the warning when I alerted him. “It must be my late night drinking last night. I’ll be fine.” He quipped.

No sooner did the time bomb explore and he was down with a massive stroke.

When we approach the GE, it is very similar to that of a patient S, who is definitely having symptoms.

S is having a fever – rising cost of housing and living, etc.. but “bear with it, we’ll fix it, the whole world is having it!” says the attending doctor.

S is also having persistent diarrhea – loss of jobs to excessive foreign workers, effects of casino, etc.. but “ a little diarrhea is good for you; it cleanses you. NO REAL ISSUE.” replied the doctor.

S is having rashes all over – the immune system is screaming havoc because medicine given is giving an adverse reaction. We need to review the medications; we need to consider a second opinion, may be.

“Of course NOT!”

“We are the best, the A team!” The Doctor screamed.

“Together, we will have to say we gave the best and right medicine. Even if some of you disagree. You can whip out your handkerchief later, I don’t care. Say YES!! “

As S gets sicker, different groups of doctors and even Sinsehs come around, all volunteers, to offer help. Not to take over the job of the main doctor team, but to offer what they have and the little they know.

After 25 years as a doctor, I realize that what makes a great doctor is the spirit of humility and teach-ability. Very often, the day we become un-teachable, it is the start of our downfall. And second opinions, even from someone “new” or young can help.

As for S’s case, she is not so lucky.

The main team shot down every prescription and injections that was shown ( and not shown) by the alternative team.


Because they are not the A team.

“In fact, we have a hard time finding people for the A team here.” Doctor sighs.

The stringent process, tedious and tough, make sure that YES-Drs are being produced; impressive in every way. But not tested, just like the other team.in fact, some are promised to be “consultant surgeons” ever before they get their basic MBBS.

As for the A team part, we have ample examples of MPs having to step down, running foul of the law, and many making quiet exit.

So we have to agree: it is hard for them to find the right A team.

I am an integral part of S. I am running a fever, diarrhea and rashes all over. My medication is not working. All I want is to have a second opinion, another team of doctors or sinseh to help me.

That is, before I collapse from shock due to an overwhelming infection from internally. As a patient, I may not know what is wrong with me, but I do know that SOMETHING is wrong with me.

So, please recognize it and not tell me that “ there is nothing wrong with S, don’t fix it!!”

Oh yes, at las, the bill.. it costs me more than S$200M, and I am still having my fever.



Latio said...

Good analogy of what's actually happening right now.
How to be humane and teachable when one's Ego is so huge that three times the size of Singapore is even not enough to contain. It's a matter of time when false pride
goes befall a Hugh fall. Just got to be a little more patience
and I don't see it to be too long for events to unfold before
our eyes.

Anonymous said...

Me does not know if i am being orientally conventional. Most CEOs of our 'PRIVATIZED' Hospitals are not medical doctors, they are usually from Bizness Administration and other non medical fields.

If we are to liken State Administrators or Rulers in other words, to medical doctors and the rest as patients, then Singaporeans at large are going to suffer.

As non-medical administrators are in-charge of Medicare and Healthcare, it is hard to believe they are able to understand the sick, injured, wounded, mentally/psychologically unbalanced and spiritually disturbed.

Similarly having elites with high incomes and paid ridiculously high remunerations and special perks to hold political offices put the people(citizenry) at risk of duty and responsibility mismatch. The high flyers can NEVER understand the plight of the poor struggling class, although they may show a lot of empathy.

Not understanding the symptoms will likely cause misdiagnoses which likely lead to prescribing the wrong medicines. And WRONG MEDICATION IS FATAL, like what You said, some doctors are likely to say 'no worry' to the patients.

In my view, doctors can say that because the it is the patients that suffer the physical and emotional discomforts and pains. AND FOR THE HOSPITAL ADMINISTRATORS, they are even further removed from their doctors and patients and they can always distance themselves from issues arising from the doctor-patient relationships.

Will the voters choose the right people to run our live? It's not important to this layman. WHAT'S IMPORTANT TO ME IS THAT THOSE THAT CHOOSE TO CONTEST THE ELECTION HAVE A SENSE OF DUTY FOR THE WELLBEINGS OF THE PEOPLE AND THE STATE.


Anonymous said...

I don't think he'll get under their 400 word limit! They are rather cutthroat about that...

Anonymous said...

I can assure you that your friend's letter will not be published unless it is edited heavily by the Spin Doctors in SPH to tone down the Truth because the Truth always hurts and PAP for some unknown reasons is still on self-denied mode.

Hence a wake-up call to PAP is long overdue in the upcoming GE.

Anonymous said...

I was supposed to vote at the last election but my area was re-group and then Wow I don't have to vote. What a shame.
But now with so many OPP I will have a go at it.

Anonymous said...

In history, there are numerous examples of greed: greed for monetary benefits and greed for political power that eventually ruin the whole nation.

It has been going on for many years already. It is time to put a check on it. Or else, our nation will face extremely horrible consequences. All the innocent people will suffer. But the greed and over-powerful people will all "laughing all their ways to the bank, definitely those banks in a foreign country", leaving the poor people agonizing for their future.

Remember: In history, a nation of greed will eventually be ruined, taking down the whole country and its people. Vote wisely, vote for our future, our children’s future!

rwkc said...

Yup, I agree absolutely with the comment to vote wisely, for the sake of our future and that of our children and grandchildren.

But what does it mean: to vote wisely?

Where I am concerned, it unequivocally means: VETO OUT all papy candidates, if that's possible; or VOTE for every opposition party or opposition representation.

This is one opportunity before us that we cannot afford to squander.

So, folks, vote wisely. And you know what that means.

Anonymous said...

The present S's Doctor is screaming across the main media for the patient to check on the details of the second opinion but failed to furnish his own detail prognosis. Alas, a last ditch diversionary tactic ...... it is sad day that the "high and lofty" needs to stoop to so low ...(sigh)

The Pariah said...

Fret not, Dr T, your letter will never get published by MSM. Your diagnosis doesn't match the "official" version.

Pray, tell me, what speaks louder than PM Lee's chant on 17 Ap 2011 that "we are servants of the people" after his track record of the last decade?

It's the classic Wall Street syndrome - they bought their own CDOs, CDS, etc and imploded massively, remember?

The Pariah

Anonymous said...


I am not sure if you have published this article in the past. MM Lee was interviewed by a National Geographic reporter in Jan 2010.

This is the link:
I have also attached a PDF version of the article.

I personally feel that as one of the leaders of this country and as the founding father of modern Singapore, he should not be making statements that Singaporeans are "less hard-driving and hard-striving" and that Singaporeans are "kiasu". Especially so if he is addressing a global audience. This is very demeaning to many Singaporeans who I am very sure are working very hard to provide for themselves and their families and also helping to drive Singapore's economy. MM Lee is the father of our Prime Minister as well as a well respected figure of many Singaporeans including other members of the PAP, I sincerely hope that they do not share his view on Singaporeans.

As a Singaporean and a first time voter (like many others), I feel that the opposition should be given an opportunity to co-run this country with the incumbents. After hearing many statements from various PAP members, I do feel that many PAP members take for granted that Singaporeans will vote for them.

Like myself, I hope that Singaporeans will consider their decisions carefully and not vote for a certain party just because of "carrots and/or threats".

Thank you very much for reading.