Long wait at A&E: SGH replies

We thank Ms Carole Chow Shuk Yeng for her feedback, and apologise for the long waiting time that she and her aunt experienced ("Long wait at A&E should not be a norm"; Forum Online, Sept 27).

When Ms Chow's aunt was triaged upon arrival on Sept 16, she was noted to be in a stable condition. Our care team continued to monitor her while she waited for a bed in the ward.

That night, the hospital experienced high bed occupancy with more than 40 patients waiting for a bed. Hence, priority was given to those with more serious conditions.

The empty beds which Ms Chow referred to in the room near her aunt were reserved for patients with special needs.

Our Emergency Department saw an average of 380 patients a day during the week of Ms Chow's aunt's visit.

Patients arrive with varied and complex medical conditions, and those in need of critical treatment will be seen immediately by our medical teams.

We are currently working with Alexandra Hospital to transfer patients who are stable to their wards when appropriate.

We seek the understanding and patience of the public as we work on both short- and long-term plans to enhance our care delivery.

As we build capacity, we will continue to work on new initiatives to reduce waiting time and improve the overall experience for our patients.

Evelyn Wong (Dr)

Head

Department of Emergency Medicine

Singapore General Hospital