The Singapore Healthcare Story
Publication Year: 2013
This is the story of the Singapore healthcare system: how it works, how it is financed, its history, where it is going, and what lessons it may hold for national health systems around the world. Singapore ranks sixth in the world in healthcare outcomes, yet spends proportionally less on healthcare than any other high-income country. This is the first book to set out a comprehensive system-level description of healthcare in Singapore, with a view to understanding what can be learned from its unique system design and development path.
The lessons from Singapore will be of interest to those currently planning the future of healthcare in emerging economies, as well as those engaged in the urgent debates on healthcare in the wealthier countries faced with serious long-term challenges in healthcare financing. Policymakers, legislators, public health officials responsible for healthcare systems planning, finance and operations, as well as those working on healthcare issues in universities and think tanks should understand how the Singapore system works to achieve affordable excellence.
Published by: Brookings Institution Press
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Title Page, Copyright
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List of Illustrations
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T_his book was inspired by a speech given in 2010 by then Minister for Health of Singapore, Khaw Boon Wan, to an international group of health specialists. I had the good fortune to attend the meeting of NIHA (the Initiative to Improve Health in Asia), a Pan-Asian Policy Program sponsored by the National University of Singapore and the Global Asia ...
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Why this book? Affordable Excellence tells the story of the Singapore healthcare system, how it works, how it is financed, its history, and where it Today Singapore ranks sixth in the world in healthcare outcomes well ahead of many developed countries, including the United States. The results are all the more significant as Singapore spends less on healthcare ...
The Singapore Healthcare System: An Overview
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Singapore has achieved extraordinary results both in the high quality of its healthcare system and in controlling the cost of care. In per capita terms and as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), its health-care expenditures are the lowest of all the high-income countries in How did this happen? How has Singapore been able to achieve these ...
High Quality, Low Cost
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Lee Kuan Yew wanted Singapore to achieve excellence—“first world standards” as he put it in his memoirs. Only then, he believed, would his young country survive and thrive. T_here is no doubt in my mind that the standards he desired for his city-state have indeed been met, and healthcare is one good example. Singapore now has a First-World healthcare system, ...
Helping Patients Pay
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T_he success of healthcare in Singapore today is largely due to the govern-ment’s creative use of the Central Provident Fund. T_he CPF’s medical savings component, called Medisave, makes it possible for Singaporeans to pay for much of their own medical care. Medisave is, in essence, a compulsory savings account. T_he government sets contribution rates for workers and their ...
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Once a healthcare system is built, it is much more difficult to reduce fixed costs, and when those costs spiral out of control, national budgets are strained. When nations can no longer support the system they have produced, they may need to resort to unwelcome alternatives that can include long delays for appointments, testing, and treatment; rationing; limitations ...
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T_he Government of Singapore contributes billions of dollars to building and maintaining the country’s healthcare system and subsidizing a major portion of the cost of patient care, based on the individual’s ability to pay. As discussed earlier, the country does all this and achieves world-class outcomes One of the many factors that contribute to Singapore’s healthcare ...
Design and Infrastructure
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Primary care, where ill patients make first contact with care professionals, is largely issued by private rather than public care providers. T_here are approximately 2,000 private general practitioners in Singapore, located mainly in housing estates, and they deliver 80 percent of primary care.1 Several private general practitioner chains serve the public, including Raﬄes ...
Investing in the Future through Medical Education and Research
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Education, research, innovation, and continual improvement are fundamental to the success of the Singapore healthcare system. T_he government has two broad goals in mind as it directs investment into healthcare knowledge and medical research. One is to better serve the people of Singapore, making certain the healthcare system is staffed with highly-competent, highly-...
Facing the Future
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In many developed countries, the proportion of elderly people in country populations is increasing rapidly. T_his trend is also true in Singapore, which has for years been experiencing a birth rate substantially below replacement. At the same time that fertility rates have declined, life expectancy has increased—due to the high quality of healthcare and rising ...
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Page Count: 182
Publication Year: 2013