SingHealth apologises after polyclinic doctor mistakenly marks woman as HIV-positive in ICA medical report

The Filipino woman went to Outram Polyclinic to certify her Immigration and Checkpoints Authority medical examination report, where the doctor signed her off as being HIV-positive even though the test showed a negative result.
The Filipino woman went to Outram Polyclinic to certify her Immigration and Checkpoints Authority medical examination report, where the doctor signed her off as being HIV-positive even though the test showed a negative result.PHOTO: STOMP

SINGAPORE - SingHealth has apologised after it mistakenly marked a pregnant woman as HIV-positive in a medical report.

The 34-year-old Filipino woman visited Outram Polyclinic on June 6 to certify her Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) medical examination report, reported citizen journalism website Stomp on Thursday (June 21).

The examining doctor signed her off as being HIV-positive even though the test showed a negative result.

In response to queries from The Straits Times, Dr Sinead Wang, clinic director of SingHealth Polyclinics - Outram, said: "We apologise unreservedly for the distress and anxiety caused to our patient and her family for the transcribing error in the ICA medical examination report.

"We have counselled the attending doctor and taken steps to strengthen our processes to ensure that this does not happen again."

SingHealth has since provided the woman with a corrected report.

SingHealth is one of three integrated healthcare clusters in Singapore, and consists of four public hospitals, five national speciality centres and a network of nine polyclinics.


A doctor at Outram Polyclinic mistakenly marked a pregnant woman as HIV-positive in a medical report earlier this month. SingHealth has apologised for the error. PHOTO: STOMP

The woman's husband, who wanted to be known only as Mr Ng, 36, told ST that the incident had caused strain to his marriage. He thought that his wife had been unfaithful, and said he had wanted a divorce after he saw the report.

Mr Ng, a Singaporean, and his wife have been married for four years, and have a two-year-old son. They are expecting their second child in January next year.


Test results had shown the woman as HIV-negative. PHOTO: STOMP

The sales manager claimed that SingHealth took more than a week to respond to his queries about the accuracy of the report, which resulted in further distress for the couple.

SingHealth, however, told ST that it called Mr Ng three days after receiving his query on June 8 to offer a corrected report.

Said Mr Ng: "With the strict processes here, I would never have expected the healthcare industry to make such a mistake. I was even telling her it cannot be a mistake."

He added: "To tick that particular (HIV-positive) box is ridiculous."