How do I use the healthcare system in Singapore

Stephanie's picture
By Stephanie - Posted on
01 September 2011
What do I need to use the healthcare system in Singapore? I'm moving from the UK, where there's a whole system in place - getting an NHI number, signing up with a local GP in your area, etc... Is there something like this in Singapore?
Stephanie's picture
Last seen: 6 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: 19/04/2010

Living in:
Cape Town, South Africa

Charlotte, North Carolina (the USA)

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You don't need anything to use the healthcare system in Singapore, but a health insurance policy is recommended. I'm assuming your moving under the auspices of an employment pass, which means you won't be able to take advantage of MediSave, the compulsory national insurance saving plan that covers basic hospital costs.

You can just walk into any private or public clinic and fill out some information and get treated, though you'll have to foot the bill on site. Day to day costs are pretty affordable in Singapore, it's like 40 SGD to see a GP and 60 to go the dentist, but if you have a serious problem or you need to go see a couple of specialists it can quickly get expensive. For this reason, get the health insurance.

The standard of healthcare here is great though, so you don't need emergency evacuation insurance, like in some expat destinations.
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georgeb's picture
Last seen: 6 years 9 weeks ago
Joined: 20/02/2012

The healthcare system in Singapore is good - but as an expat you cannot as I understand benefit from a universal national healthcare system. I havent actually lived there as yet though so I stand to be corrected! G

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Bry's picture
Last seen: 2 years 23 weeks ago
Joined: 24/06/2010

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CuraƧao, NA

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FYI, there are private and public clinics and hospitals. In my experience and from what I gather from others, there isn't a real quality difference between them. Queues at private hospitals can be as long as or even longer than those at public ones.

Of course, private clinics and hospitals tend to charge higher fees.

I was referred to a hospital once, which later turned out to be a public hospital, and after receiving excellent outpatient treatment by several specialists, my bill was all of S$75.

Upon my amazement at the low charges, I was told by the clerk that medical bills at public hospitals are subsidized. So EP holders too, qualify for this subsidy.

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