Veteran Singaporean actor Laurence Pang wrote that he was 'very disappointed' with Changi General Hospital (CGH) in a Facebook post on Feb. 28.
Long and inconclusive diagnosis at CGH
Pang recounted that his chest had been hurting for months.
However, the cause of the pain was not diagnosed in his previous visits to polyclinics.
Last January he felt 'severe chest pain' again so he went to CGH's emergency ward and was directed to visit the Cardiac Clinic for a 'better' diagnosis.
Despite going through the checks, Pang 'came out with nothing' as the hospital could not identify the cause of pain.
He was then recommended to make an appointment for electrocardiogram (ECG), but it could only be scheduled two months later in March.
Swift diagnosis at NUH
On Feb. 19, at around 11:00 pm, Pang felt discomfort again. However, this time he asked his son to send him to the National University Hospital(NUH) instead.
Note that this was almost a year since the he went for the first check-ups at CGH.
The NUH doctors asked Pang some questions, and ran some tests on him, which led to a diagnosis of arterial blockage on the next day, Feb. 20.
In fact, both of Pang's arteries were 80 to 90 per cent clogged, which required an urgent Angioplasty, a procedure to widen the clogged arteries so as to smoothen his blood flow.
Pang went for the procedure on Feb. 20, and was discharged the next day on Feb. 21.
In his post, Pang expressed concerns on the disparity between the two hospitals in the process of diagnosis.
On hindsight, he wondered if the outcome would be different if he had persisted with CGH.
When contacted by Mothership, CGH shared that they are already looking into this matter, and have gotten in touch with Pang.
A CGH spokesperson said:
“Patient care is of utmost importance to us. We take such feedback seriously, and are looking into the matter. We are in touch with Mr Laurence Pang for more information so that a thorough review can be conducted.”
Pang also confirmed in a comment that he was assured by CGH that they will investigate and update him again.
Here's Pang's full post:
In case you can't see it, here's what it says:
"I am very disappointed with Changi General Hospital.
I have been having chest pains for many months. Visited the polyclinic many times when the pain came. They found nothing.
Last January I had severe chest pain in the middle of the night. Was rushed down to Changi General Hospital ER. Spent the whole night there under observation. Came out with nothing. Was referred to their Cardiac Clinic for 'better' check up. Went there the following week. Came out with nothing. Recommended to go for treadmill and ECG, the appointment to be in March. WHAT???
Here I was having regular severe chest pain, and they had to make me wait for another 2 months for this? I tried asking for an earlier date. Sorry, full house. ...
Last week, I had another attack of chest pain. This time, I didn't want to go to Changi General Hospital. I told my son to send me to NUH. That was on 19 February, 11.00pm.
They put me under observation. Asked me some random questions, after which they warded me for a specialist to see me.
The next morning, one cardiac specialist came, asked me some random questions again. She decided that my chest pain had something to do with my heart. Sent me for some tests, injected me with some dye, and came out with the result: I had 2 blocked arteries, 80% & 90%, that needed immediate remedy : ANGIOPLASTY.
Immediately that same afternoon, they rolled me into the theatre and did the procedure.
Was well enough the following day to be discharged.
What am I saying here?
If I had gone back to Changi Gen Hospital, I don't know what would have happened. what would they have done? Or kept me waiting again?
I don't understand why the doctors in CGH could not find out what was the matter with me."
Earlier lost a civil suit
Pang's post was written a day after the hospital lost a court case against a patient who sued CGH for negligence.
According to Today, the court found that CGH's delay in diagnosis allowed the patient's initial first-stage lung cancer to progress to stage 2A. The judges in the case found that CGH's systems had serious inadequacies in proper follow-up of patients.
The patient, Ms Noor Azlin Abdul Rahman, is now at the fourth stage of lung cancer.
Top photo collage from Laurence Pang's Facebook and CGH Facebook