Angry Doctor

Sunday, October 29, 2006

You Will, Won't You?

Remember this letter?

Madam Tai must be glad to learn about this latest piece of news:

(excerpt, emphasis mine)

AMD one of MOH's priorities over next five years: Khaw

SINGAPORE: The Health Ministry will re-address the issue of the Advanced Medical Directive (AMD) as with an increasingly ageing population, the public has become more aware of its need.

Health Minister Khaw Boon Wan said on Sunday that the AMD would be one of the issues his Ministry would be looking into in the next five years.

He was giving reporters the heads-up on his focus areas ahead of the opening of the 11th Parliament on November 2.

Mr Khaw said his Ministry intends to have more outreach programmes to discuss the merits of an AMD.

Introduced in 1997, the AMD allows a patient to state in advance that he does not want to be sustained artificially should he become terminally ill or unconscious.

So far less than 4,000 Singaporeans have signed up for it.

The Health Ministry would like more Singaporeans to sign up.

To facilitate that, it will reach out to them and explain what the directive stands for.

Mr Khaw said: "We think of it as a very taboo subject.....we do not want to talk about it. Because you don't talk about it, by the time the patients are dying or not able to express themselves, the burden is left to the family members. And it is tough for the family members who will say, 'let's do it this way' or 'let's do it that way'. So I would rather when we are in control of our faculty, make that kind of decision. Let's not pass the buck to the family members. That's my main message."

angry doc thinks everyone should contemplate his own mortality and make end-of-life preparations.

But he is nevertheless disturbed by the Ministry's latest 'priority'.

You see, the Advanced Medical Directive allows you to state that you do not want any extraordinary life-sustaining treatment to be used to prolong your life.

You can't sign one that says you want everything done, even when the doctors think you're a gone case.

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  • The real story is like this lah....

    Singaporeans getting more informed. Also getting more assertive in making what they want known.

    Also getting better and better at complaining.

    And more and more people complaining why doctor asked them to take father/mother/grandmother/grandfather off life support.

    And MOH getting bigger and bigger bill or getting more and more complaint letters to answer.

    So no prizes for guessing why this new priority! Haha!

    By Blogger Dr Oz bloke, At October 30, 2006 10:08 am  

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