The new 9 tier hospital bill system

It guarantees smaller bills. The subsidy ranges from 10% to 75%. A family with an income of $5,600 will still get a 10% income. Great, finally someone realises that a family income of $5,600 is nothing and bearly sufficient if spread across several adults with such a high cost of living. The question is whether a family income of $5,600 would translate into some money to be set aside to pay for hospital bills of $5k, $10k or $50k if the family is so 'sway' to be hit by a major illness. The article in the Today paper by Neo Chai Chin also includes an example of a Mrs Wong, 65, 28 days in a 8 bedded ward and a family income of $4000. Her bill of $2,500 today will become $2000 with a 40% subsidy in July 1. The best part is that she does not need to pay any cash. Wow, my mother will say 'free ah, no need to pay ah, govt so good!' In Mrs Wong case, $800 will be paid by MediShield and $1200 by Medisave. See, not only smaller bills, but no bills actually. Go in and stay and all paid for. Where on earth could one be so fortunate to stay in a world class hospital and literally for free? Only in paradise. For those with bigger income, they will have to stay in more expensive wards and a comparatively more expensive bills. Whatever the ward they choose, if income is above $5600, no subsidy. But they should thank god that they have bigger incomes to pay the bills. Lucky fellows.


Matilah_Singapura said...

What people don't seem to get is that medical services aka 'healthcare' is a very expensive and resource hungry good to produce -- whether by govt or the private sector.

This 9 tier govt designed (so-called) "system" will work for awhile. But eventually it will collapse because someone will have to pay for the subsidies -- i.e. somehow somewhere the state will have to raid the productive areas of the economy to sustain.

But a welfare state is inevitable, as is universal healthcare, which will cause many people to suffer through sub-standard delivery.

If people rely on the govt to look after them, then these people are asking for trouble, and one shouldn't waste too much time giving these folks any sympathy.

redbean said...

matilah, you are assuming that all the cost computation factors are correctly input. And that it is strictly commercial, nothing about a govt do a little to help the people.

i believe that the govt, the hospitals, hospital land, are to serve the people and not so much as to max profit from the people. i always support the idea of the govt selling the services at market price to foreigners and an upmarket part of it to those willing to pay for it.

i am still not happy with the current formula.

Matilah_Singapura said...

Personal opinions might be emotional and nice to vent and share, but they don't count in the objective reality of economic law, the nature of markets and capital struccture.

I couldn't care less if the govt gets it right or not. If people want the govt to "save them", good -- they can go to the ballot and vote for all their dreams and fairy tale to come true.

Healthcare is a necessity for life like food or toothbrushes, condoms, education and iPhones. However because healthcare is high cost, people try to "cheat" to get themselves something for nothing.

People will pay thousands or hundreds of thousands for trinkets like watches and jewellery, or an expensive holiday or $100k + "makeover" for their kitchen, but try and charge them $20k for a life-saving operation and they shriek with disgust and expect the govt (i.e. someone else) to pay for it.

Fuck it. Let the corrupt system fail. No one gets my sympathy.

redbean said...

one thing to let the system go the way it is. it is another thing to be a helpless victim in the system.

we have been mesmerised by the americans and the american sytem for so long that we are throwing all precautions into the wind. we trusted them into buying their banks and ended becoming victims of conmen in suits. practically the whole american financial systems are run by crooks, surviving on fraudulent accounting.

and the failure of the american system is pretty evident to all by now but we are still heading towards the same cliff.

it was good till they gone crazy with excessiveness. over spending, overconsumption, over paying, over charging, and allowing inflation and high cost of living to runaway as if they were a natural thing and the way to go. anything excessive is bad.

Matilah_Singapura said...

I think you are mistaken to assume S'pore's public health care is modeled on the US system.

Where did you get that idea?

Anonymous said...


I always have one nagging concern about this multi-tiers system. a peron earning more should not penalized especially when he/she is sick. Everyone in one way or another will need health care.

A person earning more does not necessary means he/she can afford more. He may have many children, family members to support. By being responsible and taking good care of his family throughot his life, he may not have much more left compared with another person that earn lesser. But, he has paid his fair share of taxes/donations/hard work and contributions to society by never depending on government handouts etc,. So, when the time comes for the society to pay him back... oops sorry he earns too much that society consider him to be too well to do and undeserving??? is this right?


Anonymous said...

When the Society itself is sick as it is run by robot like beings programmed with artificial intelligence, all systems are likely to fail.

Reason; the lack of conscience !


redbean said...

hi rookie and all,

we have our different concerns and different ways of looking at the problems. alas, we are not in any position to do anything to it.

so our concerns will just remain as our concerns and the supertalents will do it their ways. anyway, they have the vote of the people to do it their ways.

Matilah_Singapura said...

The idea of "society paying you back" is a completely untenable idea.

When the (social) problem becomes impossible in the sense that the economics will severely affect the nation, the government will always shift the goal posts, change the rules or do whatever unchallengeable unilateral action, which you can moan and groan about but to no effect.

If you want a public healthcare system, then expect cock-ups and "unfairness". The only viable and sustainable option is a completely private and free market.

Frankly, I don't give a damn whether people choose to support public anything — health care , education, transport etc. They are ALL bound to fail, and I could care less — any more than to write about it.

I take the individualist route of self-reliance and protecting the self — from bad "democratic" decisions and people who have their own agendas in working for government.

redbean said...

matilah, you are making the same false assumption that cheap public health system is bound to be bad. like the same assumption that privatisation is the only way to run an effective organisation.

the second assumption means all public organisations are inefficient, which means all our civil servants are inefficient. they better go and hide themselves and they shouldn't be paid that kind of sky high salaries.

the point is that an organisation can only be efficient if there is a political will to make it efficient. there is no reason to employ inefficient people in any organisation, public or private.

Matilah_Singapura said...


I make no such assumption. Medical services and healthcare are inherently EXPENSIVE and RESOURCE INTENSIVE.

Just to equip a modern hospital and train people to deliver care is hugely costly and takes a long time.

Yes, public institutions are inefficient.


no, you can't use political will to make organisations efficient. If we could do that, we'd be living in a utopia by now.

Don't blame me -- I didn't write the "books" governing laws of the universe.

When you have fully private systems, those people employed as public or civil servants will be employed (if they make the grade) by private enterprise. The jobs still have to be done by somebody.

Similarly in private medical care, doctors, nurses, administrators will still be required to do the job and make the system work.

Like I said, I don't give a shit if people prefer 'cheap' universal healthcare. Since they like it so much, they are welcome to the consequences and are welcome to try to use political will to manage these institutions. At least I'll be entertained by their self-inflicted stupidity. ^-^