MOH publishes private surgeon charges to help patients make more informed choices

Patients can now have an idea of how much private-sector surgeons charge for their services.
Patients can now have an idea of how much private-sector surgeons charge for their services.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Patients will now have an idea of how much private-sector surgeons charge for their services.

The Ministry of Health (MOH), which started publishing total operation fees in public hospitals in 2014, has expanded the list to include total operation fees in private hospitals.

The ministry says this will increase fees transparency and help patients make more informed decisions.

The breakdown of the private hospital operation fees will give the surgeon's fee, the anaesthetist's fee and the cost of the facility such as the use of the operating theatre.

The ministry said in a press release: "Such information will enable patients who are considering treatment at private hospitals to estimate the fees charged by the doctors and the hospital for the various listed procedures."

There is no such breakdown for public hospitals as the surgeons and anaesthetists in public hospitals do not charge a separate fee.

The list of common procedures for which the ministry publishes operation fees has also been increased from 65 to 141.

The ministry started publishing bill sizes in 2003, beginning with only public-sector facilities, but later including treatments in the private sector. These are total bills with no breakdown of charges.

Only institutions doing at least 30 cases a year are included "to ensure statistical significance".