Patient buys Panadol via Foodpanda after almost 2-hour wait, SKH says it prioritises emergency cases

by Arjun Singh

Sengkang General Hospital (SKH) in Singapore has responded to a complaint made by a patient on TikTok that he had to order painkillers via food delivery app, foodpanda, after waiting for almost two hours at the hospital for his medication. In a Facebook post, SKH assured the public that the patient’s care team had provided appropriate care based on his condition and explained that emergency cases take priority over less serious conditions.

The patient, Mr. Hamid Osman, posted a video on TikTok expressing his frustration about the waiting time for his painkillers. He filmed himself collecting the medication from a foodpanda delivery rider at the hospital lobby and expressed disappointment in not being able to get the medicine from a first-world hospital. He even considered discharging himself against medical advice the next day as he believed there was no point in staying at the hospital if he could not obtain the necessary medication.

However, when contacted later, Mr. Hamid clarified that in hindsight, he now understands the hospital’s process better. He mentioned that the nurses at SKH were helpful and explained that he cannot take medicine from outside the hospital without the doctor’s approval. He appreciated their assistance and acknowledged that SKH had provided him with the necessary care.

SKH issued a response apologizing for any discomfort experienced by the patient and explained that in the case of a new admission, all medications must be approved by the doctor for patient safety and ordered through the system for record purposes. They also confirmed that the patient had been certified medically fit for discharge.

SKH reiterated its commitment to attending to every patient in a timely manner. They acknowledged that patients with less acute conditions may sometimes experience longer waiting times compared to those with serious and life-threatening emergencies.

This incident highlights the challenges faced by hospitals in managing patient care and prioritizing cases based on urgency. It is crucial for hospitals to ensure effective communication with patients and manage expectations regarding waiting times. SKH’s response demonstrated their commitment to providing the necessary care and addressing the concerns raised by the patient.

In conclusion, Sengkang General Hospital responded to a patient’s complaint about the waiting time for his painkillers. They explained their prioritization process and assured the public that appropriate care had been given to the patient. This incident serves as a reminder for hospitals to effectively communicate with patients and manage expectations to provide a positive healthcare experience.

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