Friday, May 7, 2010

Healthcare In Malaysia

I've been watching the SiCKO by Michael Moore which is a documentary about health care in the United States. The documentary explains how the health care is so much related to the insurance companies and corruptions that is involved. Here's something that I saw in the documentary:
  • Hospitals need to confirm with insurance companies before accepting patients.
  • Those without insurance coverage will be asked whether they can afford the treatment before receiving it.
  • If you have insurance but the treatment cost is far greater than the covered amount you can get bankrupt.
  • Insurance companies will try to find a way to make patients had breached agreement so that no coverage money will be paid.
  • Some insurance companies will only accept treatments by specified hospitals.
  • Some hospitals will only accept patients being covered by specified insurance companies.
  • Patients who are not able to pay for their treatment will be kicked out.
Those are just a few that I thought I saw in the movie so take a look by yourself by using this link.

After watching that documentary I was wondering can something like that happen in Malaysia. I believe some of those situations are already happening but the difference is we can still rely on the government hospitals. I don't know anything about health care in Malaysia so correct me if I'm wrong.

In Malaysia there are free treatments but not for all kind of illnesses and not for long. Some illnesses require subsequent treatment or medication that is not performed or supplied by the government hospitals. For example people with kidney failure will require dialysis to clean their blood and those with diabetes will require frequent insulin shots. The questions are: Does those treatments free? How long they can be free? How much a patient will have to spend for their chronic diseases? What happen if they cannot afford their

I'm also wondering what is the difference between a private and public hospitals in Malaysia. What kind of services are different? Specialist centers are private or public institutions? If the best services are provided by private institutions then only those whose capable can receive such treatments. How about those with lower income whose not able to pay for high treatment cost or even have insurance coverage?

After watching the documentary I did log into the WHO website to check for some statistics. I found out that Malaysian would have to spend about 55 percent on their health care and the rest is by government (if I interpret the data correctly) which is about similar to the United States. Private expenditure on health in France and United Kingdom is only 12 to 20 percent. Our neighbors Singapore and Thailand are 68 percent and 36 percent respectively. I checked this out because the documentary shows that France and the UK give free medical treatments to their people. If I was wrong about the data in the WHO website please correct me.

I would like to hear from people who have knowledge or experience about our local health care system and hopefully can answer all questions in this post. I cannot make any statement because I really don't know how it works.

2 attacks:

nurain May 10, 2010 at 11:06 PM  

hmmm..kalo ikutkan malaysia nye health care ni kire baik tau..kite tak discriminate..banyak bagi rawatan percuma, and kalo perasan most of the penduduk mampu nak dapatkan rawatan,even kat pedalaman, health personans akan pergi dan beri rawatan.

macam kalo bayaran or insurance cover 2 saya tak la tau sangat. but if kat gomen, kite pakai GL..guarantee kalo die adalah omen nye orag, die boleh dpat keistimewaan sket~

fiki wiki August 4, 2010 at 1:27 AM  

My grandma was supposed to get her operation done. It wasn't too serious; just something to do with removing some parts of her intestine. We had her first checked on 2nd January.
Well anyway, initially she was scheduled for an appointment for surgery on 10th March (Government hospital), however when we got there to the hospital, it was canceled as the operation theatre was fully booked and there happened to be far more urgent surgeries that needed to be done. So then it was postponed all the way till mid October; yes 7 months of queuing time.
We thought of trying out the private hospital, but when we had her checked, the consultation itself costed us over RM500 and we were told that the entire operation would cost over RM52,000. However, the operation will take only about 2 days as compared to the Government's 7 months. So anyway we decided to just wait for the free Government service eventhough it'll have that 7 months waiting period.

The treatment is about the same on both hospitals, its just that the ones in Government will be given priority on a more serious case first and queuing for the operation theatre will be a nightmare.
The rooms in the private hospitals are far better kept, usually at most will have only 4 patients per ward and the doctors would do a consistent routined check up on you every now and then. The ones in Government may be up to about 20 patients per ward and have the genders mixed up and usually its the nurses who'd do the check up.

My mum was a doctor for the Government so we kinda knew a quite a few stuff about the hospitals around Malaysia. However she quit practicing and is now just lecturing as she couldn't stand the state of how badly kept the Government hospitals were. Some had rats and cockroaches.

Anyway, new hospitals like Selayang or Sungai Buloh aren't too bad. It's those such as Hospital Besar that are quite a concern.

Better be safe to avoid being ill and pray lots and lots to the God for better health =)

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