Concord International Hospital's regulatory lapses not linked to treatment of Covid-19 patients: MOH

The private hospital was enlisted by MOH to help care for Covid-19 patients who were clinically well. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - The regulatory lapses found at Concord International Hospital (CIH) were not linked to the management of any Covid-19 cases, said the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Sunday (Dec 27).

This is based on its inspection thus far, said an MOH spokesman.

The private hospital, which specialises in cancer treatment, was enlisted by the MOH to help care for Covid-19 patients who were clinically well but tested positive for the virus, and did so from March to September.

On Saturday, the MOH announced that it had temporarily stopped the hospital from providing all healthcare services since Dec 19, after several significant breaches of the Private Hospitals and Medical Clinics (PHMC) Act were found during inspections. These lapses impacted patient safety.

"Multiple life-saving equipment and medications were either not maintained or not available in critical areas of the hospital such as the intensive care unit and the operating theatre," said the MOH on Saturday.

"There was also a lack of quality control in the laboratory and infection control processes, which poses significant risks to patient safety and well-being."

There were no patients warded at the hospital in Adam Road. A 2018 report said it has 31 beds.

The MOH has informed CIH to work with its medical team to review the treatment plans and ensure proper continuity of outpatient care for the four patients who had ongoing outpatient medical appointments as of Dec 19, while the hospital addresses its lapses.

The hospital could not be reached for comment.

Last Wednesday - after its operations had been stopped - CIH said in a Facebook post that it welcomed the arrival of new management in end-November.

"With input from MOH in view of the change of ownership, the management has decided to take the opportunity to renovate the hospital, improve our protocols and introduce new services to better meet patients' needs moving forward," it said.

It added that the hospital will relaunch in end-January 2021 "featuring new specialities and unique treatments", and under a new name.

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