According to the Ministry of Health (MOH), Singapore’s three charity kidney dialysis organisations had space for only 100 new dialysis patients and would last only until June or July. At least 6,000 existing patients are having their dialysis at 31 dialysis centres, which are running at full capacity at the moment. Singapore would be unable to cope if there is a spike in new dialysis patients this year.
Although MOH announced that 7 new dialysis centres will be opened by 2020, the earliest centre to be completed is only ready by September – two months short of the July deadline. MOH did not explain or apologise for their poor planning which will endanger the lives of patients requiring kidney dialysis.
This is not the first time the Singapore government failed to plan ahead of population increase. Train transport infrastructure, childcare centres, hospital beds (where patients are now being housed in common corridors instead of properly-sanitized patient rooms) and HDB flats are also seeing severe shortage due to the 6.9 million population target.
The Minister of Health is Gan Kim Yong, who has been avoiding media appearance addressing the shortages in the public health sector to protect his political reputation.