More Patients At A&E Departments The Day After Christmas And New Year

2 Jan

SINGAPORE : The Accident and Emergency (A&E) departments of hospitals generally see more patients the day after Christmas and New Year, according to Singapore's public hospitals.

They see patients with problems such as food poisoning and allergies.

With most general practitioners closed during the holiday period, doctors said patients should head to the nearest A&E department, if they think their condition will worsen, even though it is not life-threatening.

Singapore's major public hospitals – like Changi General Hospital, Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Singapore General Hospital – see an average of 400 patients a day at their A&E departments.

But they said this number goes up some 20 per cent the day after Christmas and New Year.

Dr Gan Han Nee, associate consultant at the A&E department of Changi General Hospital, said: “They wait until the next working day to see a family practitioner or a polyclinic doctor, and when they are seen by these doctors, they are deemed not suitable enough to be treated by these outpatient settings, meaning they are ill enough to be referred to us.”

Besides illness, injuries from falls and drink-driving are common cases attended to at A&E departments during the year-end holidays.

Non-emergency cases can take up to three hours before one gets to see a doctor.

– CNA/ms

Channel News Asia

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