Pioneer Polyclinic serving more residents in Jurong

 Children finding out more about what polyclinic staff do in a pilot programme at Pioneer Polyclinic on Jan 27, 2018, when it was officially opened.
Children finding out more about what polyclinic staff do in a pilot programme at Pioneer Polyclinic on Jan 27, 2018, when it was officially opened. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - Pioneer Polyclinic in Jurong is a key milestone in the journey to further strengthen the primary healthcare system, having been "designed with the patient in mind", Health Minister Gan Kim Yong said.

He officially opened the polyclinic, at Jurong West Street 61, on Saturday (Jan 27).

The polyclinic, which started operating in July 2017, is the first of six to be developed by 2020 under the Healthcare 2020 Masterplan, and managed by National University Polyclinics (NUP).

NUP, which is part of the National University Health System, was established last year, when the Ministry of Health announced that the public healthcare system would be re-organised into three clusters, each to serve the different regions in Singapore.

"With this new polyclinic, residents of Jurong West can now have more convenient access to quality, integrated and seamless care closer to their homes," said Mr Gan.

In the seven-storey polyclinic, related clinical services are located on the same floor wherever possible, so patients do not need to walk far.

For instance, after a patient under chronic care completes a blood test, he can consult a doctor in his room on the same level.

NUP chief executive officer Lew Yii Jen said at the launch that the number of patients has been steadily increasing since its opening. It has seen close to 700 patients every weekday and more than 90,000 patient visits to date.

Pioneer Polyclinic has begun offering psychology and physiotherapy services. In March, podiatry services will be launched.

The opening ceremony saw the unveiling of a 10m mural titled Be One With Nature. More than 400 people from NUP and its community partners collaborated on it.

There is also a piano on the third floor for patients and visitors, brought in by Pioneer Polyclinic head David Tan.

Speaking of art in the new polyclinic, Mr Gan said: "Art and music can soothe patients' minds and help them on their path to recovery."

He also toured the facilities, and observed a Kids' Work Experience Programme being piloted on the third floor.

About 50 children aged between eight and 12 were role-playing polyclinic staff such as doctors and pharmacists. The children, who live in the area or are children of staff, got to find out more about what polyclinic staff do.

As part of community outreach efforts, health talks and school visits have also been held.