Tag Archives: 3M


The MediShield Life Review Committee’s final report and recommendations dominated the headlines over the weekend. This was perhaps not wholly unexpected as these are the most major reforms to Singapore’s healthcare system since Medisave in the early 1980s. Various online commentators including Bertha Henson and Leong Sze Hian have offered their interpretations while the mainstream […]

ever Increasing Integrated (MediShield) Plan premiums

Response to media queries on rising Integrated Plans’ premiums in general and a specific query about private doctors offering ‘unnecessary treatments’ to generate more income: 1. For insurers to be financially viable, the premiums collected must be more than the claims paid out. This ‘medical loss ratio’ as it is described in the industry is […]

Obamacare and MediShield Life- TODAY 15 Nov 2013

I chaired a session on Obamacare and what implications there are for MediShield Life in NUS yesterday and later participated in a panel discussion on the topic. Must say it was pure coincidence that the Ministry of Health Singapore announced that it would reveal the names of the members appointed to the MediShield Life review […]

From talking about ‘personal responsibility’ to thinking about ‘nation’

I wrote the commentary below which was published in TODAY for the following reasons: 1. Ask that Singaporeans, cynical or otherwise, recognize that whatever they may personally feel, the changes in healthcare announced are a major shift away from the previously dominant ideology. Recall that in a previous post, I had highlighted the elder Mr. […]

Pre-funded MediShield: Good Idea?

I was quoted in the newspaper ‘Today’ (See bottom of post for the article) supporting the idea of the younger Singaporean paying higher premiums so that the elderly pay less than what they would have paid had their premiums been actuarially computed. However, I also warned that while this was politically positioned as pre-funding or […]

Myth of the invisible hand in Healthcare

The commentary I wrote that was published in the Straits Times today (‘Myth of the invisible hand in health care’- 14 June 2013) received some attention from readers. Why did I write the commentary? No conspiracy theories and no one put me up to it. Quite simply, I had been following the comments in the […]

Bilateral Cochlear Implants- A heartless, bureaucratic MOH? Not quite…

The 24th May 2013 letter in the Straits Times Forum pages appealing for the government to “Allow Medisave use for daughter’s ear implant” has elicited severe criticisms of the authorities for being unsympathetic, bureaucratic and the like. Some comments from the Real Singapore website which publicized the letter: A very cold and uncompassionate govt & […]

‘Fundamental shifts’ for a truly national MediShield

I get a sense that the Government and many in civic society have a different sense of what are ‘fundamental shifts’. Health Minister Gan Kim Yong declared ‘fundamental shifts’ in our healthcare financing design in Parliament 2 weeks ago and revealed on Sunday that the Ministry of Health was considering expanding MediShield to cover more […]

Healthcare Financing Reform: Only One ‘Right’ Question

“What are you trying to achieve?” is the question we would ask clients embarking on new initiatives. Similarly, when we undertake a ‘fundamental’ review of the healthcare financing system, we have to go back to basics. Dr. Daniel Kim, whom I studied under in an intense series of workshops on systems thinking when I was […]

Voice from the ‘Ground’

A letter received by the Straits Times following the interview that was published last Saturday. I must say I am encouraged that these are important issues impacting the lives of Singaporeans we are discussing and that open dialogue will help us as we review policies to improve healthcare for Singaporeans. I hope we can continue […]