Referral to polyclinic: SGH explains
UPON discharge from the Singapore General Hospital, patients would be given a follow-up appointment at either the specialist outpatient clinics, or a polyclinic and general practitioner clinic, if their condition is stable ("Needlessly troublesome red tape over a simple blood test" by Mr Heng Cho Choon; last Wednesday).
If the patient is referred to a polyclinic, the next blood test and review will be done there. The polyclinic doctor would interpret and explain the results to the patient during the consultation.
If follow-up is at the hospital, results of the blood test done at the polyclinic will be transmitted to the hospital for our specialist's review.
Mr Heng was discharged and referred to the polyclinic for follow-up. We are sorry that his polyclinic referral was not clearly explained to him, thus causing him anxiety.
We will continue to remind our staff to better anticipate and respond to the needs of our patients, especially the elderly.
Tracy Carol Ayre (Dr)
Singapore General Hospital