Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Heavy handed IMH Psychiatrist refusing to release patient who has recovered: An open letter to President Dr Tony Tan and the Singapore Government

My twin brother was admitted into the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) more than 3 months ago, and is now in ward 35B under the care of the nurses and the watchful eye of acting Assistant Director (Nursing) Gurbak Singh who has been directed by A/Professor Dr Chua Hong Choon, the Chief Executive Officer of IMH to care for him and look into his welfare, and through their care and compassion, my brother has now recovered.  

It is now 120 days since my brother has stayed in IMH and with him having to pay at least $40 per day for ward charges alone, the hospital bills is going to be huge and will eat up most of his Medisave.  Is this any way to treat a senior citizen (my brother is 65 years old)?

Moreover as Advent has arrived, it only proper that sensitivity be exercised as Christians need to spend Christmas with their families.  My brother was in tears when he phoned last week, pleading with me to secure his release and asked me to appeal for help from his Member of Parliament.

Despite being stabilised, my brother’s attending psychiatrist, one Dr Ganesh who is from India has been defiant and refuses to release my brother and even had the audacity to tell my brother that I take up the matter with the authorities as he is not afraid of anyone.   Clearly there is a total lack of compassion with absolutely no respect for the patient and his family members.  My 92 –year-old mother who resides in a nursing home is not aware that her son has been confined to IMH and it will break her heart if she finds out.  How long can she live? It is inhumane to do this to the family, taking into account also that I have lost my wife and will have to spend Christmas all alone.

It is highly improper for foreigners to ill treat Singaporeans when the Singapore Government welcomes foreign talent with open arms , and the worst part is that these bullies are allowed to get away with their heavy handedness.

The CEO of IMH is a very kind and understanding man, but some of his staff are tarnishing the good image that he wants to build and maintain.

Appeals to the Ministry of Health, the Prime Minister and cabinet ministers have fallen on deaf ears.  No one wants to reply.  What is all this talk of being an inclusive society when there is absolutely no compassion for our marginalized citizens who need support?

IMH is now in the news – for all the wrong reasons, as a Myanmar nurse has been charged with assaulting a mentally ill patient.  The healthcare professionals have to learn one thing – help patients in their recovery and get them home so that they can rebuild their lives and reintegrate back into society.  And if they are unable to do that, then why pray tell are they in the business of mental health care?



Latest update - Sunday 13 Dec 2015.: Due to the stress of what it taking place, my twin brother's 30 over years son who has a Bipolar condition, has suffered a stroke and is now warded in New Changi Hospital.

1 comment:

rayhope said...

11th Dec 2015

Dear President Tony Tan,

My twin brother is still stuck in IMH and I want to know why is MOH/IMH still keeping him in the wards when it is time for him to go home. Is this anyway to treat a senior citizen, an elderly citizen who has, during his prime time ,contributed to the economy of Singapore? Why is it that no bothers to give a reply? Is this how Government agencies operate?

I appreciate a reply.

Thank you.

Raymond Anthony Fernando