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How is life as a doctor in Singapore?

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  #1891 (permalink)  
Old 08-04-2021, 11:42 PM
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Define worth it.

Singapore Medicine not very humanistic la.
I'm a fam physician and i work in a polyclinic where i see 50 patients a day.
Today i have a patient 68 years old who has cerebral palsy. Brought in by her 60 year old sister.
Her case is simple, just check some blood, make sure her kidneys function didnt fail so that the anti-convulsants she is on dont kill her.
however her sister has a lot of questions ( covid vaccination, this and that) and also requested like 8 other standby medication ( creams, cough med etc).
I got somewhat irritated, but ok, let do it.
Then the sister whip out her own queue chit and requested to be seen also. Her appointment time is actually 2 hours away.

I lost it. My tone change, i frown at her , sigh at her, tsk at her.
End up this poor sister keep apologizing to me for jumping the queue. I did consulted her medical problem eventually, but in a slipshod way.

Right now , i'm guilty as anything as im drinking my wine.
Thinking back, i asked myself why this happen.
What happen to my compassion? Care for patient.

Then i realised it because i need to see 50 patients a day. Every second count
Do you know MOH give each patient 10 mins per slot at the polyclinic.

10 minutes. come into room, tell me her problems ( note the plural) , i have to clarify many things, examine her, order medicine, type out my notes.

ALL IN TEN MINTUES.
Do this 45 times a day.
How to be humanistic?

Got once, i meet this old chap in polyclinic. He is 75, hanging on to his life with stage 3 prostrate cancer and have parkinson. He looks uneducated but is immensely intelligent.
It was raining and not very busy, so i kapo a bit
I noted that he defaulted many of this appointment.
I ask him why
He says he doesnt like the doctor in the hospital, cos they dun have care for the patient.
' 没有爱心‘ was his exact words.

In that spur of the moment, i told him 爱心是有限的.
You are my 41st patient of the day liao. If i give u all the 爱心 you all want, i will be dry liao. 医生也是人。We all want you to be well, but we cant manja you all the time

Last i check , he actually went back to see his urologist and neurologist. haha

This is a difficult but interesting field la
Go for it. Only 1 life. Do it.

but hor, see my advice above. Go to a med school Singapore recognise.
Totally agree with you. Can tell you definitely work Polyclinic. Nowadays only need to see 50? Used to be 70!

A few more points:

1) Seeing patients ie busting your butt to try to get through 50-70 patients in 8-9 hours is viewed as BASIC work. No kudos. No bonus. No accolades. No acknowledgement. No recognition. No rewards. In fact people say your job is "easy".
2) Bonus and recognition does NOT come from treating patients well and getting them results ie well managed or cured. Zip. Nada. As long as nothing bad ie no negligence, no mistakes can oredi. As my former Head of Polyclinic said "our job is to see the patient as quick as possible safely and then get them out the room so we can see the next one"
3) Bonus and recognition comes from other things like projects, research, other roles and responsibilities ON TOP of busting your butt seeing 50-70 patients wanting your love and care and concern = SUPER DRAINING
4) Rob Peter's time to pay Paul. HOD watches the queues and Polyclinic. If there is a room that is behind on waiting times they will ask why? Bad for the doctor's performance. So if you spent more time on Paul then you spend less time on Peter to try to catch up. But what if Peter is also another needy FON patient with lots of questions?
5) Humanistic? I guarantee you after you have to talk to 50-70 people everyday......that means 275-385 people a week , 1100 -1540 a month. That's a lot of people. And from all walks of life. Don't be surprised you find many characteristics of humans that make you dislike humans. Selfish. Self centred. Stubborn. Arrogant. Quarrelsome, Victim mentality etc etc
6) What a "good" doctor is to patients is not usually steeped in the science and how you actually treat them with medicine. It is a lot of BS sweet talk "human touch" nonsense that sometimes borders on lying to them giving them false hope, false sense of security and reassurance, friendly love and stuff. Makes you wonder why you had to go through all those years of training only to do the non-EBM things that make patients happy but doesn't harm them either. Placebos.
7) It is one patient at a time. And it is tiresome. There is no leverage. You can never see more than one patient at a time or help one person at a time. Goes against the ethics and privacy guidelines and you will get into trouble for it. Engineers can invent or build things that benefit thousands.
8) Each patient pays very little in the overall picture. And they usually pay a flat rate for your unlimited (limited by you) time. My analogy is that of prostitute. You wanna be the prostitute that services 50 clients a day each paying $20? Or the prostitute that goes for high net worth clients charging $5000 a night?

Go find work in finance. It is by far the best field to be in SG.

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  #1892 (permalink)  
Old 08-04-2021, 11:56 PM
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Totally agree with you. Can tell you definitely work Polyclinic. Nowadays only need to see 50? Used to be 70!

A few more points:

1) Seeing patients ie busting your butt to try to get through 50-70 patients in 8-9 hours is viewed as BASIC work. No kudos. No bonus. No accolades. No acknowledgement. No recognition. No rewards. In fact people say your job is "easy".
2) Bonus and recognition does NOT come from treating patients well and getting them results ie well managed or cured. Zip. Nada. As long as nothing bad ie no negligence, no mistakes can oredi. As my former Head of Polyclinic said "our job is to see the patient as quick as possible safely and then get them out the room so we can see the next one"
3) Bonus and recognition comes from other things like projects, research, other roles and responsibilities ON TOP of busting your butt seeing 50-70 patients wanting your love and care and concern = SUPER DRAINING
4) Rob Peter's time to pay Paul. HOD watches the queues and Polyclinic. If there is a room that is behind on waiting times they will ask why? Bad for the doctor's performance. So if you spent more time on Paul then you spend less time on Peter to try to catch up. But what if Peter is also another needy FON patient with lots of questions?
5) Humanistic? I guarantee you after you have to talk to 50-70 people everyday......that means 275-385 people a week , 1100 -1540 a month. That's a lot of people. And from all walks of life. Don't be surprised you find many characteristics of humans that make you dislike humans. Selfish. Self centred. Stubborn. Arrogant. Quarrelsome, Victim mentality etc etc
6) What a "good" doctor is to patients is not usually steeped in the science and how you actually treat them with medicine. It is a lot of BS sweet talk "human touch" nonsense that sometimes borders on lying to them giving them false hope, false sense of security and reassurance, friendly love and stuff. Makes you wonder why you had to go through all those years of training only to do the non-EBM things that make patients happy but doesn't harm them either. Placebos.
7) It is one patient at a time. And it is tiresome. There is no leverage. You can never see more than one patient at a time or help one person at a time. Goes against the ethics and privacy guidelines and you will get into trouble for it. Engineers can invent or build things that benefit thousands.
8) Each patient pays very little in the overall picture. And they usually pay a flat rate for your unlimited (limited by you) time. My analogy is that of prostitute. You wanna be the prostitute that services 50 clients a day each paying $20? Or the prostitute that goes for high net worth clients charging $5000 a night?

Go find work in finance. It is by far the best field to be in SG.
Only IB and Private equity firms that pay a lot. But how many people they take in a year? You can count by hands. There are also less opportunities in finance than it used to be especially in Singapore. If you are in Hongkong or New York, different stories.

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  #1893 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 12:21 AM
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Only IB and Private equity firms that pay a lot. But how many people they take in a year? You can count by hands. There are also less opportunities in finance than it used to be especially in Singapore. If you are in Hongkong or New York, different stories.

I had a very senior banker patient talk to me before. I said that medicine is slow and steady. Recession proof. He said that is not the point in life unless you want to work till you die and never retire. Bankers' goal is to earn as much as fast as possible and retire young and enjoy life. If you are smart, capable, resourceful, high achiever why would you choose to go into a field that pays you $20 per service regardless of result and time spent and try to achieve your financial goals? Another thing about medicine. because it takes so much effort to get into medical school and then so much time and effort to finish and get your degree and licence....and then it pays well enough but not that great it is the PERFECT PRISON. What you will be holding is this profession that pays $100-$200k a year. Pretty good. But not good enough you can work 10 years and retire. Gotta keep working. If you want to find something else to switch to you will have to take pay cut. Then you say aiyah I already spent so much time and effort. Just stay on. You are STUCK.
People always associate being a dr as the experience they have being with the doctor. Wah he so nice to me. Or wah so fast. They dont see the other side where the dr see patient after patient deal with difficult FON questions. Bend backwards. Try to ICE the way out of the consult. And then have to deal with the $5 payout claim patient insurance for all that work....Not worth it be GP.
Specialist you gotta train your butt off man. Calls and calls and calls. Exams. And then later fight for consultant post (meaningful ones). Then PTE sector is another wild west got to market. It is tough.

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  #1894 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 12:48 AM
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Always remember. There is no bonus payouts in medicine. Not like other fields if do well big bonus! Bonus is very powerful. Imagine getting 100k bonus. Your net worth really jumps overnight. Also healthcare everyone want to cut. In good times keep low. In bad times cut. Never want to go high. So naturally earnings in healthcare are on down trend adjusted for inflation.
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  #1895 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 02:23 PM
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Define worth it.

Singapore Medicine not very humanistic la.
I'm a fam physician and i work in a polyclinic where i see 50 patients a day.
Today i have a patient 68 years old who has cerebral palsy. Brought in by her 60 year old sister.
Her case is simple, just check some blood, make sure her kidneys function didnt fail so that the anti-convulsants she is on dont kill her.
however her sister has a lot of questions ( covid vaccination, this and that) and also requested like 8 other standby medication ( creams, cough med etc).
I got somewhat irritated, but ok, let do it.
Then the sister whip out her own queue chit and requested to be seen also. Her appointment time is actually 2 hours away.

I lost it. My tone change, i frown at her , sigh at her, tsk at her.
End up this poor sister keep apologizing to me for jumping the queue. I did consulted her medical problem eventually, but in a slipshod way.

Right now , i'm guilty as anything as im drinking my wine.
Thinking back, i asked myself why this happen.
What happen to my compassion? Care for patient.

Then i realised it because i need to see 50 patients a day. Every second count
Do you know MOH give each patient 10 mins per slot at the polyclinic.

10 minutes. come into room, tell me her problems ( note the plural) , i have to clarify many things, examine her, order medicine, type out my notes.

ALL IN TEN MINTUES.
Do this 45 times a day.
How to be humanistic?

Got once, i meet this old chap in polyclinic. He is 75, hanging on to his life with stage 3 prostrate cancer and have parkinson. He looks uneducated but is immensely intelligent.
It was raining and not very busy, so i kapo a bit
I noted that he defaulted many of this appointment.
I ask him why
He says he doesnt like the doctor in the hospital, cos they dun have care for the patient.
' 没有爱心‘ was his exact words.

In that spur of the moment, i told him 爱心是有限的.
You are my 41st patient of the day liao. If i give u all the 爱心 you all want, i will be dry liao. 医生也是人。We all want you to be well, but we cant manja you all the time

Last i check , he actually went back to see his urologist and neurologist. haha

This is a difficult but interesting field la
Go for it. Only 1 life. Do it.

but hor, see my advice above. Go to a med school Singapore recognise.


Haha, i really feel for you. Thank you for chatting on this forum! That is many patients in one day, definitely hard to show too much TLC. Honestly tho if it makes you feel better, everyday as an engineer we are faced with bosses with zero technical knowledge trying to make decisions based on costs and their humour of the day. I prefer beer tho.... i guess now if i really decide to pursue this, whether to do it here or abroad since its all so ex! There goes my life savings... but if i don't chase a dream now, then its never no?
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  #1896 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 03:47 PM
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200K a year for 10 years if you put in SNP500 at average ROi of 13.60%, u can retire comfortably if u spend 50K a year. Unless u are a spendthrift.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
I had a very senior banker patient talk to me before. I said that medicine is slow and steady. Recession proof. He said that is not the point in life unless you want to work till you die and never retire. Bankers' goal is to earn as much as fast as possible and retire young and enjoy life. If you are smart, capable, resourceful, high achiever why would you choose to go into a field that pays you $20 per service regardless of result and time spent and try to achieve your financial goals? Another thing about medicine. because it takes so much effort to get into medical school and then so much time and effort to finish and get your degree and licence....and then it pays well enough but not that great it is the PERFECT PRISON. What you will be holding is this profession that pays $100-$200k a year. Pretty good. But not good enough you can work 10 years and retire. Gotta keep working. If you want to find something else to switch to you will have to take pay cut. Then you say aiyah I already spent so much time and effort. Just stay on. You are STUCK.
People always associate being a dr as the experience they have being with the doctor. Wah he so nice to me. Or wah so fast. They dont see the other side where the dr see patient after patient deal with difficult FON questions. Bend backwards. Try to ICE the way out of the consult. And then have to deal with the $5 payout claim patient insurance for all that work....Not worth it be GP.
Specialist you gotta train your butt off man. Calls and calls and calls. Exams. And then later fight for consultant post (meaningful ones). Then PTE sector is another wild west got to market. It is tough.
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  #1897 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 04:59 PM
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Haha, i really feel for you. Thank you for chatting on this forum! That is many patients in one day, definitely hard to show too much TLC. Honestly tho if it makes you feel better, everyday as an engineer we are faced with bosses with zero technical knowledge trying to make decisions based on costs and their humour of the day. I prefer beer tho.... i guess now if i really decide to pursue this, whether to do it here or abroad since its all so ex! There goes my life savings... but if i don't chase a dream now, then its never no?
Which engeinnering field u work?
Mine was MNC so supervisor all engineer right up to technical manager, so alinged la.

My parents no money. So I blew 200k , even took 80 peg grant from government. I graduate with 300 bucks in my bank account. First month at work I pack lunch , till first pay check of 5k AUD comes in then I eat the 8.9 meal at canteen.
But I work in Australia 1 year and some. Ahah, I save up 90k AUD in just 1 year of work plus got superannuation of 12k which grew to 18k. Covid time I plonk some into the stock market and return a handsome profit. My classmate who return to sg got 3.6k starting pay which becomes 3.2 after cpf. Annual cash in hand haven't hit 40k.


If u not old, I suggest u try apply auzzies pr, then apply. Back then, I apply pr and said waiting time was 2 years so I enrolled as international student. 3 mths into school my pr came. Half a mind to quit school and re enroll again, but overall will waste 2 years so didn't do so.
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  #1898 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Which engeinnering field u work?
Mine was MNC so supervisor all engineer right up to technical manager, so alinged la.

My parents no money. So I blew 200k , even took 80 peg grant from government. I graduate with 300 bucks in my bank account. First month at work I pack lunch , till first pay check of 5k AUD comes in then I eat the 8.9 meal at canteen.
But I work in Australia 1 year and some. Ahah, I save up 90k AUD in just 1 year of work plus got superannuation of 12k which grew to 18k. Covid time I plonk some into the stock market and return a handsome profit. My classmate who return to sg got 3.6k starting pay which becomes 3.2 after cpf. Annual cash in hand haven't hit 40k.


If u not old, I suggest u try apply auzzies pr, then apply. Back then, I apply pr and said waiting time was 2 years so I enrolled as international student. 3 mths into school my pr came. Half a mind to quit school and re enroll again, but overall will waste 2 years so didn't do so.
That's so hardcore, you should be really proud of yourself! I work in the public sector haha, somedays its more politics than technology. Its a really "comfy" job but it makes you numb and robotic and it really just lacks a human touch for me. If i didn't decide on medicine, my other choice was psychology. Just something that feels more...human. And actually i heard can apply for foreign residency easily but in a european country not on the list of recognised med schools haha. Countries like Belgium France Germany and Netherlands are still open to foreigners if you're ever interested! My friend (an engineer) moved there already. But i mean singapore probably has a better life standard?
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  #1899 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2021, 10:20 PM
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That's so hardcore, you should be really proud of yourself! I work in the public sector haha, somedays its more politics than technology. Its a really "comfy" job but it makes you numb and robotic and it really just lacks a human touch for me. If i didn't decide on medicine, my other choice was psychology. Just something that feels more...human. And actually i heard can apply for foreign residency easily but in a european country not on the list of recognised med schools haha. Countries like Belgium France Germany and Netherlands are still open to foreigners if you're ever interested! My friend (an engineer) moved there already. But i mean singapore probably has a better life standard?
Those schools requires u speak their local language.
Sg not necessarily better standard of life la. In sg u run the rat race. Monday to sat u grind at work. Go with Ur spouse to some of her friend house warming parties during weekend and she starts to show u brochure of new EC...zzz.
My time in auzzies v nice lei.
I go home 5pm see parents teaching their kids how to pitch baseball.
Once I work as a pizza delivery guy and went deep into the ang mo suburbs. Very nice one, evening time cul de sac ang mo kids play. Sometime hot ang mo babes open door for pizza. Slurps. Haha.

Work liao got money and leisure weekend I drive into the hilly regions and stroll. Autumn time falling leaves very nice. Far distance another guy walking his dog will wave back at you.

Sg is where I grew up. If parents not old and I found an auzzies girl, I would have stay there.
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Old 09-04-2021, 10:48 PM
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Those schools requires u speak their local language.
Sg not necessarily better standard of life la. In sg u run the rat race. Monday to sat u grind at work. Go with Ur spouse to some of her friend house warming parties during weekend and she starts to show u brochure of new EC...zzz.
My time in auzzies v nice lei.
I go home 5pm see parents teaching their kids how to pitch baseball.
Once I work as a pizza delivery guy and went deep into the ang mo suburbs. Very nice one, evening time cul de sac ang mo kids play. Sometime hot ang mo babes open door for pizza. Slurps. Haha.

Work liao got money and leisure weekend I drive into the hilly regions and stroll. Autumn time falling leaves very nice. Far distance another guy walking his dog will wave back at you.

Sg is where I grew up. If parents not old and I found an auzzies girl, I would have stay there.

Thats precisely the problem.
It is very difficult to find an aussie girl.
Asians are looked down on.
If you are attributed as a source of “kung flu” in trump words, you should be happy already much less finding a caucasian girl
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