Health Ministry to submit official letter to Singapore government over baseless report

Sep 2, 2017
File pic credit Facebook Datuk Seri Dr S.Subramaniam.

KLUANG: The Health Ministry will submit an official letter to the Singapore Government on dissatisfaction over the republic’s online news portal which published a baseless report pertaining to the country’s healthcare services and medical personnel.

Minister, Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the letter would be submitted in the near future after discussing with the ministry’s legal team, and the Foreign Ministry.

“The letter to the Singapore Government will state our feelings and views on what was done by the (news) portal. After that, it is up to the Singapore Government to take the necessary action,” he said.

Dr Subramaniam, who is also MIC president, was speaking to reporters after launching the foundation stone-laying ceremony of SJK (T) Ladang Nyior in Sri Lalang today.

Also present were Education Deputy Minister Datuk P. Kamalanathan and Johor MIC chairman Datuk M. Asojan.

Dr Subramaniam was commenting on the report which alleged there was slow response time of up to 30 minutes by an ambulance vehicle from the Sultanah Aminah Hospital (HSA), following a fatal road crash involving a 25-year-old Singaporean man on Aug 25.

The report also claimed that HSA had demanded a sum of deposit from the victim’s family before treating the patient.

Dr Subramaniam also condemned the irresponsible action of the news portal as “the facts in the report were baseless.”

“At the end of the day, the ambulance was dispatched (to the scene) immediately. The allegation that the hospital staff refused to give treatment if payment was not made, was also baseless as emergency treatment was administered to the victim before (his) next-of-kin and family members arrived from Singapore,” he said.

The minister also stressed that communication breakdown involving the Malay-speaking hospital staff should not become an excuse as hospitals the world over had been using their national language as the medium of communication, but that could be improved in future.

Asked whether the portal should apologise over its article, he said he would suggest that to be included in the official letter. –Bernama