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A&E treatment priority not based on age alone

The Straits Times | Sunday, Nov 2, 2014

Khoo Teck Puat Hospital on November 4, 2012.

We refer to Ms Wang Keng Chin's letter ("Hospital priority queues for seniors"; Wednesday).

Treatment priority at the accident and emergency department is based on the urgency and severity of the patient's medical condition, and not on age alone. Patients with life-threatening conditions or those who are severely ill would be prioritised for urgent treatment.

Ms Wang's father was first assessed by our triage nurse, and because of his presentation and symptoms, he was "up-prioritised". A doctor attended to him within 30 minutes of his visit. He was subsequently sent to the observation area for further observation and to rest, while waiting for the test results.

Patient safety is our top priority and the patient's length of stay at the observation area was necessary to ensure comprehensive monitoring and assessment of his condition.

Kenneth Mak (Associate Professor)

Chairman Medical Board
Khoo Teck Puat Hospital
Alexandra Health System


This article was first published on Oct 31, 2014.
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