Are locums not recognised by PG scheme?

My sister went to a private clinic in Ghim Moh recently. When making payment, she was told by the clinic assistant that she could not enjoy the Pioneer Generation (PG) benefits because the locum who saw her was not authorised to sign the claim form.

I wonder if this is true. For clinics on the PG scheme and Community Health Assist Scheme (Chas), is it the doctor who is registered or the clinic itself?

If, indeed, it is true that locums are not authorised to sign any related forms, it is only right that patients are told up front, at the point of registration, so that they can make informed decisions.

They should not be told only after consultation and when making payment. In fact, such clinics must also display a sign in the four main languages saying that the PG and Chas benefits are not available temporarily.

When my brother called the clinic to clarify, the clinic assistant suggested that my sister return the medicine to the clinic and get a refund.

On a related note, I wonder if the clinics that were recently suspended by the Ministry of Health for making false PG and Chas claims ("More clinics under probe for possible cheating"; July 4) have removed the relevant decals from their shopfronts and put up signs to say that these benefits are no longer available, as well as informed patients during registration of the situation.

Yeo Eng Chin