Mr Health Minister, the Malaysian rakyat is scared and worried.
They see you giving a demonstration about drinking tepid water from a glass and they are NOT impressed.
Starting from last week I have received many allegations of private hospitals overcharging members of the public, or giving them the runaround.
The rakyat understands the pressures the hospitals face, but when people are given wrong information or when members of the rakyat feel cheated, then something must be done. You are the minister of health. You have to investigate these allegations and put them right.
The story of a very worried mother.
We were at Hospital Sg Buluh after my daughter developed very high fever, cough and difficulty in breathing last night. Her insurance says to take her to Hospital KL or Sungei Buloh Hospital, so we rushed to Sg Buloh hospital.
She had travelled to Jakarta three (3) weeks ago, so the emergency unit told us to go to their covid-19 saringan first, which we did.
The nurse registered her and after a while a doctor came and asked the following questions:
Doctor: What are your symptoms?
Answer: High fever, sore throat, cough and difficulty breathing.
Doctor: Did you travel anywhere?
Answer: Yes, to jakarta 3 weeks ago
Doctor: Have you been in contact with a positive Covid-19 person?
Answer: I don’t know
Doctor: You don’t fulfil the criteria for us to do the test for you.
You didn’t come from any of the 9 countries and you are not in contact with positive person.
Mother:???? She is sick right now and needs medical attention and we need to test her since there is an epidemic now.
Doctor: Sorry. You can go upstairs to emergency or go to private hospital like Pantai (he shows us list) and do your test there.
Mother: but what about people who we may have been in contact but not know if they are infected and going around everywhere without being tested? It could be anyone.
Doctor: Here is the list of hospitals you can go and do a check if you don’t fulfil the criteria. The list says Pantai hospital.
We rushed to Pantai hospital and got to their emergency and I told them my daughter’s fever had spiked and that we would like to do the covid-19 test. The nurse tells me to park my car.
I parked and my daughter walked in and was led into a room where she registered herself. The time was 5.50am. Her temperature was taken and BP done. We waited.
Around 6am, a doctor comes and asks three (3) questions. What are your symptoms, did you travel to any country and what medicine did you take.
My daughter told her fever, sesak nafas (breathing difficulty), sore throat and cough. Jakarta 3 weeks ago. Actifast.
She checks my daughter’s throat and says “yes she has redness in her throat”.
The doctor said, “We don’t do the covid test here.”
I showed her the photo on my phone with sign from Sg Buluh hospital.
She tells us that Pantai DOES NOT do the test, although KKM tells everyone they do.
She suggested we go to KPJ Damansara during office hours for testing. She asked if we want medication. We told her “No”.
(Office hours means that it is not open at the weekends.)
Nurse asks me to go pay bill.
RM164.80!!! for less than 3 minutes of the doctor’s time.
I asked why it was so expensive? She said, “This is a private hospital.”
I told her we were at general hospital but they redirected me to them.
I felt severely cheated as this Pantai hospital is clearly taking full advantage of us.
Had we known that they were NOT going to do the test we would NOT have bothered going to Pantai Hospital. I am not rich enough to afford all this.
This is why many people will not go to hospital to screen themselves.
They could then infect others because they dont know if they are carrying the virus.
We may have all the symptoms but are given the run around.
Just because my daughter travelled to Indonesia, she doesn’t fulfil the criteria. Indonesian president has confessed he suppressed the news.
Must we first have been in contact with a positive patient? How do we know who we have been in touch with prior to the RESTRICTION MOVEMENT ORDER? My daughter went to class and later at the market.
And we could be spreading it to everyone at home.
(Editor: Will the Health Minister, Dr Adham Baba, investigate the cases of profiteering by the hospitals and pharmacies, the incorrect information being given and the shoddy treatment of members of the public?)