Saturday, September 14, 2013

My New Impression of our Singapore Polyclinic

I was greedy, craving for lots of different food lately and one of them was Braised Meat with Chestnut stew. And who would have imagine it was such an ordeal for me on this what seemed to be a rather ordinary day of food preparation.
Photo credit link
The thing about chestnuts was the removal of the shell - a lot of "hard work"! To my dismay, one of the shell that I was trying to remove got stuck onto the nut quite badly and I had to use extra muscle strength to have it removed that was when the shell got lodged between the nail and skin of my thumb!!!

I didn't do much about the wound except to wash the wound with water. I continued my food preparation and didn't think too much about the wound (big mistake!). 

Two days on, my thumb got more painful, pus and blood started to surface. The mere touch of the wound would send me jumping and yelling (literally!) to think I have a high threshold for pain!

Hubby ordered that I need to go get the wound treated properly and to get some medication. Which I regretfully saw a private GP nearby my home. These 2 medications (one oral antibiotics and one antibiotic cream) costed me $108!!! No dressing of wound was done, no advice of any sorts on wound care was given!! The clinic looks so run down and heavily cluttered that I wonder if it's a warehouse more than a clinic!!!
3 days on, the pus and blood continued to surface and no signs of recovery! 

Something has to be done and in a huff I visited my neighbourhood polyclinic which I decided that I was prepared to blow away 2 hours waiting to be treated. I just wanted that darn wound to be healed - fast!

Quite to my surprise (pleasant one in this case), I was ushered to get my queue number by friendly staff at the station and registration was done in less than 10 minutes. The counter staff arranged for me to see the doctor with the shortest queue as it was near lunch time. Before meeting the doctor, I have got my height/weight, BMI and BP measured. 

This was a "BRAND NEW" polyclinic I have came to. In my impression of this particular polyclinic everything was done in a snail pace manner all the while. Even registration took at least 30minutes the last time  (at least 3 years ago) I was here, medication took more than an hour to be prescribed. It's so much more efficient and systematic and staff were many times friendlier than those I've met 3 years ago!

Saw the doctor and was given proper guidance on what to do with the wound by the nurse at the dressing centre. Was even assured of a recovery in a week or two's time. Medication was prescribed in less than 15mins. All time worked out to be less than an hour!!! And best of all everything only costed me $23.10 in TOTAL even cheaper than seeing a private GP for common cold/flu!!! Heavy subsidies were given for treatment at the polyclinic for standard medication. I am definitely not complaining. 

Oh I was googling and found this very interesting iPhone app which might be useful to you if you want to monitor the queue at any of the polyclinics in Singapore. (disclaimer: I no longer own an iPhone now and have not tried the app before, use it at your own discretion)

The nurse advised that the wound MUST NOT come into contact with any water, it must be kept dry at all times including bath time! And so I had to fashion this dressing everyday for at least a week or two. I had to put on disposable gloves whenever I need to prepare food or shower. It was mighty INCONVENIENT!!!

Signs of recovery after one week of TLC (changing of dressing and applying of antiseptic cream) from hubby. The wound has dried up!

Today (2 weeks later) I declare that my thumb is FULLY RECOVERED!!! This episode has taught me not to take things for granted especially cuts/wounds. Get the wound treated early/fast and keep the wound dry once a cut is sustained. Read more about wound care here. And I've totally changed my perception of our Singapore Polyclinic, the waiting time isn't as daunting as before (well at least to me in my recent encounter).


Libby said...

You are overcharged by the private GP, did you ask them why so expensive, it is ridiculous and exorbitant!

Mamabliss said...

The counter staff at the clinic told me that the antibiotic (oral) costed $64!!! anyways, that will be my first and last visit to that Dr ever!