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Bertha HarianBertha Harian

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Nursing the doctors in SAF

Sometimes I think the men in this country forget that there are women here too. I am referring to ST Page 1 story on SAF to tap expertise of civilian doctors. If I was a mother with a son doing national service, I would be dead worried. Because nothing is said in the story about the “current” situation regarding medical treatment for our boys in green. In fact, I don’t even know how many guys there are in NS. Apparently, 40,000 NSFs, according to Today. But how many doctors or medical officers (what’s the difference)? What’s the ratio? All I have is six to eight doctors sign on each year. And the number is 20 per cent more today than 10 years ago. This has always been my beef with journalists. What in heaven’s name is 20 per cent more?? From 10 doctors to 12? From 100 doctors to 120?

Also, what is the current standard of medical care in the SAF? How many guys see doctors? For what ailments? And what if they need specialist help? What about number of doctors stationed at training exercises? For this, I have to read Today to find more, just a bit more. But at least more. So it seems there’s gonna be a Pilot Physician Partnership thing and the NS doctors are going to be rotated to the hospitals before they become full-time SAF doctors.

Of course, the papers went to town with the announcement of the new medical training facilities. TNP even had a very nice graphic. Well and good. But hey, can get answers to critical questions first before going rah-rah at yet another innovation by the G, which I don’t even know people need….?

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An ex-journalist who can't get enough of the news after being in the business for 26 years

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