S R ESayampanathan

Master (2016-2020)
Academy of Medicine, Singapore



26 November 2018

Dear Fellow Academicians

In response to the Ministry of Health, Singapore's recent public announcement of the medical fee benchmarks recommended by the Fee Benchmarks Advisory Committee, the Academy has issued its statement, fully supporting the much awaited publication.

Although the fees of certain specialists such as anaesthetists and radiologists are not fully addressed in the fee benchmarks, the publication has certainly help to fill the void since the withdrawal of the fees guidelines by the Singapore Medical Association in 2007.  The Academy will continue to work closely with the Ministry to increase the coverage of the fee benchmarks in the near future.

Fellows are encouraged to align with the recommendations set by the Fee Benchmarks Advisory Committee.  If the fee is to be higher than the upper limit of the benchmark for the procedure, it should be explained and justified clearly through financial counselling to patients.  Diligence in documenting the justifications is also advised, as financial counselling helps patients make important decisions on care, treatment and procedures.


As the leading professional organisation embracing all specialties and sub-specialties, we are pleased to have contributed to the fee benchmarks through our Colleges and Chapters representatives, who actively participated in many of the consultation and feedback sessions held by the Fee Benchmarks Advisory Committee.  On behalf of the Academy Council, I would llke to thank all our representatives for their commitment and contributions, and also our appreciation to Dr Ho Kok Sun for representing the Academy on the Fee Benchmarks Advisory Committee.


In 2018, the Academy also engages our government agencies on many other important healtcare initiatives.  In addition to the new Singapore Medical Council (SMC) Sentencing Guidelines, the Academy is also working with SMC to support the Complaints Committee with professional opinions where needed.


The Academy is also collaborating with the Agency for Care Effectiveness (ACE) for the project on "Appropriateness Criteria for Use of Imaging Technology (ACUITY)", which also seeks to formulate a set of local guidelines in three (3) important clinical domains: MRI of low back pain, CT and MRI of headache, and chest radiographs in asymptomatic local individuals.  The workgroups comprise representatives from Colleges and Chapters of specialties from orthopaedic surgery, neurology, occupational medicine, family medicine, emergency medicine and sports medicine, to name a few.  Thank you for agreeing to serve on the respective workgroups to contribute towards this project.  The Academy hopes to share with Fellows, updates by ACE and the workgroups in due course.


In view of mounting global concerns over the abuse and misuse of medicines with high addictive potential, the Ministry formed the Joint Committee for Opioids Control in Healthcare Institutions (HCIs), which comprises representation of all healthcare professionals (doctors, dentists, pharmacists and nurses), to advise on the clinical risk stratification of opioids and calibration of controls for opioids in licensed healthcare institutions, and to produce a "National Guidelines on the Safe Prescribing of Opioids" to guide healthcare professionals involved in the prescribing of opioids.  The Academy's representatives on the Joint Committee for Opioids Control includes Dr Yeo Sow Nam (Anaesthesiology), Dr Yoong Chee Seng (Anaesthesiology), Dr Winslow Rasaiah Munidasa (Psychiatry), Dr Tjan Soon Yin (Rehabilitation Medicine), and Dr Tan Huei Nuo (Geriatric Medicine).  The Academy Council looks forward to the Joint Committee's briefing on the guidelines in early January.


The Academy, in its Strategic Plans 2018-2020, will endeavour to play an increasing active role in advocacy and will undertake many more strategic initiatives towards advancing professionalism and professional standards of practising clinicians and contributing responsibly to the national healthcare agenda.


This will not be possible without the participation and contribution by many dedicated Fellows.  We hope that more will join as Fellows to support our effort in helping to shape and influence important healthcare policies and to promote high standard of professional competency as we look forward to a new year.



Best Wishes

Dr S R E Sayampanathan
Academy of Medicine, Singapore

Email: master@ams.edu.sg






Induction Comitia 2018


The Academy’s 2018 Induction Comitia took place on 22 September at the Health Promotiom Board (HPB) Auditorium.  67 inductees were conferred the Fellowship of the Academy with Mr Amrin Amin, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Health gracing the occasion as Guest-of-Honour.




Dr S R E Sayampanathan addressed the inductees of their obligation to maintain high standard of professional and ethical practices:


"As a member of the medical profession, you are held in the highest esteem by the public and society.  They depend on a reliable and trustworthy healthcare system and look to you for the relief of their suffering and ailments.  This trust is contingent on the profession maintaining the highest standards of professional practice and conduct.  You must therefore strive to continually strengthen the trust that has been bestowed on the profession."



Mr Amrin Amin highligted the role of the Academy and its close collaboration with the Ministry of Health.


"The Ministry of Health (MOH) regularly enagages the Academy and its Fellows on clinical practice guidelines, professional standards, adoption and utilisation of new technologies, and the development and practice of specialists."



The Induction Comitia, with more than 280 in attendance, also witnessed the graduation of candidates from the Master of Health Professions Education Singapore and Staff Registrar Scheme Diploma.  Past Master Dr Ho Lai Yun was also presented with the Annals' Gold Reviewer Award 2017. 



College of Surgeons Lectureship Dinner 2018


The College of Surgeons, Singapore (CSS) held its Lectureship Dinner 2018 on 14 November at The Westin Singapore Hotel, where College President Dr Chua Wei Chong, along with CSS Council, welcomed Mr Chan Heng Kee, Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Health, as Guest-of-Honour.


In his opening address to 100 Fellows and guests in attendance, Mr Chan shared that the Ministry needs to shift strategies if we are to continue to provide Singaporeans with accessible, affordable and quality care for the longer term:


The "3 Beyonds", i.e. Move Beyond Healthcare to Health, Beyond Hospital to Community, Beyond Quality to Value, are fundamental changes and they need to be supported by all in the healthcare system.  On "Beyond Quality to Value", Mr Chan added that "value is enhanced when we improve outcomes, lower costs or even better, achieve both."  Fee Benchmarks is one of the several initiatives to drive better value in our healthcare system and the Ministry appreciates the important inputs to this effort by the College of Surgeons and Academy of Medicine.



The 23rd Yahya Cohen Memorial Lectureship was awarded to Prof Jimmy So, Director & Senior Consultant, Divison of General Surgery, National University Hospital, who delivered a presentation of his study on 'Roux-en-Y or Billroth II Reconstruction after Radical Distal Gastrectomy for Gastric Cancer - A Multicenter Randomized Controlled Trial'.


In the next half of the evening, A/Prof Kenneth Mak, Deputy Director Medical Services (Health Services Group), Ministry of Health, delivered the 13th College of Surgeons Lecture where he shared personal and inspiring 'Lessons on Professional Excellence' that defined his calling as surgeon, healthcare administrator and national servicemen.


To cap the evening, Mr Chan was invited to present the College of Surgeons Gold Medals to five (5) outstanding young surgeons from general surgery, hand surgery, neurosurgery, orthopaedic surgery and urology.





Guidelines on Evaluation and Management of Neonatal Jaundice

The College of Paediatrics and Child Health, Singapore (CPCHS), launhed its 'Guidelines on Evaluation and Management of Neonatal Jaundice' on 20 October 2018 at the KK Women's and Children's Hospital Auditorium.


The College, along with its Chapter of Neonatology, initiated a workgroup to develop a National Neonatal Jaundice Guidelines with the objective of unifying a common management plan based on serum bilirubin levels, as recent development of transcuteneous bilirubionometer has allowed for non-invasive bilirubin screening.



Members of the workgroup, led by Professor Samuel Rajadurai, comprise paediatricians, neonatologists, paediatric gastroenterologists, and general physicians and nurses in polyclinics.


- End of Report -





   B. Professional Opinions and FeedbackB. Professional Opinions and FeedbackB. Professional Opinions and FeedbackB. Professional Opinions and FeedbackB. Professional Opinions and FeedbackB. Professional Opinions and Feedback

Back To Top