Thursday, September 15, 2016

Singapore: Religious Scandal & Health Care!


My Guru told me one lunch time at the Hospital Canteen that when Satan turn up nowadays he is not going to be wearing horns. As he is smart he might even be wearing collars.

Mega Church Scandal In Singapore

The City Harvest Church (CHC), which had a congregation of 33,000 followers when the court case started three years ago, but since reduced by half, got embroiled in one of the biggest corruption cases in Singapore’s 50 year history, when its founding pastor Kong Hee and five of his senior staff were charged with misuse of church funds. On October 21, Singapore’s District Courts found all six guilty of acting dishonestly in conspiring to misuse church’s funds running into millions of dollars.
Kong Hee was found guilty of secretly funnelling 18 million dollars of the church’s funds into sham investments to bankroll the controversial pop music career of his wife Ho Yeow Sun. CHC’s finance committee member John Lam, fund manager Chew Eng Han, deputy senior pastor Tan Ye Peng, Finance Managers Serina Wee and Sharon Tan were all convicted of devising plans to use a further 19 million dollar to cover the tracks by setting up sham companies.

BBC: Singapore City Harvest megachurch leaders guilty of fraud

 

The scandal is the biggest corruption case squeaky-clean Singapore has seen in years. From racy music videos to a convoluted money trail, the case has riveted Singaporeans.
City Harvest Church was founded by Kong Hee, charismatic pastor, and his wife, pastor-turned-pop singer Sun Ho, in 1989.
Known for its slick image and wealth-focused brand of Christianity, it has grown rapidly and is now estimated to have at least 30,000 members in Singapore and others elsewhere.
Wow!
My Guru also told me that when you grow up in a decent safe society, you would lose your ability to tell the good from the bad. How right he was.

Perhaps we should look at its good bit that perhaps Satan did not touch : Health Care.

The Angry Medic said...
Brilliant, Am. I currently actually work in Singapore, and this article is an excellent perspective on my local healthcare system. Guess I wasn't wrong to leave the NHS. I'll be linking to this!


Singapore Now ©2013 Am Ang Zhang

The Cockroach Catcher visited Singapore in 2013 and is most impressed with how a city state emerged from British Colonial rule to become a shining example to the rest of the world both in terms of Employment, Education, Rule of Law and most importantly Health Care.

Until now, most health care in England has been “free” at the point of delivery. This indeed may be where the trouble really is.

When I was growing up in Hong Kong, education was not free nor was it compulsory. Yet most of us valued it. Every single bit of book, pencil and paper were paid for by hard working parents. There was no abuse of any of those items. Primary education became compulsory (and free) from 1979, yes, late.

Well, one thing I have to admit about British Colonialist is that they generally leave a good government behind. How that is achieved is a mystery to many but in general a stable government with a single policy for 150 years or so may well be one of them. In recent years, the Civil Service in Hong Kong and Singapore had been very efficient and whatever corruption there may have been had been contained or controlled.

Old Singapore Today©2013 Am Ang Zhang
Citizens of England might be surprised to hear that for most of us, health care is not free.

No, not for those of us who pay national insurance and taxes and if we include VAT, that is just about everybody.

Singapore: NO! NOT FREE!

Singapore’s health delivery is not free at any point. This has the singular advantage of preventing the over-utilisation of any of its healthcare services. As England struggled to stem the flow of new EU citizens from coming to use (or abuse) our NHS, Singapore’s system simply see to it that it would not happen. Yet there is a safeguard in public health for what is known as a catastrophic situation which happened during the SARS outbreak.

Singaporeans are considerably healthier than Americans, yet pay, per person, about one-fifth of what Americans pay for their healthcare.


So how does Singapore achieve such impressive results?
The key to Singapore’s efficient health care system is the emphasis on the individual to assume responsibility towards their own health and, importantly, their own health expenditure.

The state recovers 20-100 percent of its public healthcare outlay through user fees. A patient in a government hospital who chooses the open ward is subsidized by the government at 80 percent. Better-off patients choose more comfortable wards with lower or no government subsidy, in a self-administered means test.
I've heard a lot of smart people warn that co-payments are penny-wise but pound-foolish, because people cut back on high-benefit preventive care. Unless someone is willing to dispute Singapore's budgetary and health data, it looks like we've got strong counter-evidence to this view: Either Singaporeans don't skimp on preventive care when you raise the price, or preventive care isn't all it's cracked up to be.
More details on how Singapore's system works:
  • There are mandatory health savings accounts: "Individuals pre-save for medical expenses through mandatory deductions from their paychecks and employer contributions... Only approved categories of medical treatment can be paid for by deducting one's Medisave account, for oneself, grandparents, parents, spouse or children: consultations with private practitioners for minor ailments must be paid from out-of-pocket cash..."
  • "The private healthcare system competes with the public healthcare, which helps contain prices in both directions. Private medical insurance is also available."
  • Private healthcare providers are required to publish price lists to encourage comparison shopping.
  • The government pays for "basic healthcare services... subject to tight expenditure control." Bottom line: The government pays 80% of "basic public healthcare services."
  • Government plays a big role with contagious disease, and adds some paternalism on top: "Preventing diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tobacco-related illnesses by ensuring good health conditions takes a high priority."
  • The government provides optional low-cost catastrophic health insurance, plus a safety net "subject to stringent means-testing."
                                                             The Undercover Economist

So in Singapore private clinics are responsible for 80% of primary care but public hospitals cover 80% of hospital care!

 

Singapore has some of the best public hospitals in the Far East if not the world so much so that even those with private insurance often chose to have their operations in a public hospital but staying in a more private room if their insurance covers it. Public hospitals of this level of excellence become the natural competitor for the private market and helps to keep overall cost down without the need of draconian legislation. Such good public hospitals also provide some of the best training grounds for future generations of top class doctors.

 

Singapore together with Iceland has one of the lowest Infant Mortality rates in the world, a third the figure of the USA.

 

Read also:

 

The Singapore health system – achieving positive health outcomes with low expenditure                                               by   John Tucci

 


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