The business of keeping people alive
Mediacorp had a few news clips of the happy senior citizens in the homes or community hospitals over the weekend. They appeared healthy and enjoying every moment of their time alive. What they did not know is the heavy cost to keep them alive. From the look of it, the cost was paid by their children. Obviously they did not know that they were bankrupting their children or straining their financial resources just to keep them there. It is not cheap definitely. Ignorance is bliss but not for those who have to struggle to pay the bills. One is deemed financially able to foot the bills if the household income is above $1,500. Unbelieveable! Khaw Boon Wan has been in charge of the MOH for several years and have been working very hard to keep medical cost down. How successful has he been? Has medical cost come down or still spiralling up? The recent increase of fees in community hospitals is a testament that the cost is just going up. For those who are still healthy, pray not the day you have to be admitted to any hospitals or nursing homes. Many will not be able to afford it even with their Medisave and medical insurance. Some of their savings may not last even one month when the bill can go to tens or hundreds of thousands. With the high cost of hospitalisation and medical fees, everyone who is sick or ageing is a walking liability to himself and the family. And we celebrate for being able to keep people alive to 80, 90 or 100 years.