Tighten processes at polyclinic to prevent more errors

I read about the series of lapses Madam Karen Koh experienced at Choa Chu Kang Polyclinic with concern ("Woman gets wrong jab, faced other errors at polyclinic"; last Saturday).

It is appalling that it wasn't just one error committed, but three.

Human error seemed to be the contributor in all cases. This undermines the quality expected of our public healthcare system.

Serious questions should be asked about whether processes are being followed and whether staff are adequately trained.

The National Healthcare Group Polyclinics, which oversees nine polyclinics islandwide, must conduct a thorough investigation and tighten processes to ensure that lapses do not occur again.

This should also apply to the other polyclinics under the group's purview.

This must be done quickly to restore the public's trust and confidence in our polyclinics.

The objective should not be to punish personnel but to study and implement measures to prevent a recurrence.

After all, administering the wrong type of vaccine can lead to unintended consequences.

The goodwill compensation offered to Madam Koh is a pittance and an insult to the inconvenience and distress she had to go through. A proper compensation package should be dispensed.

Gary Teo Teck Chye

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 04, 2016, with the headline 'Tighten processes at polyclinic to prevent more errors'. Print Edition | Subscribe