Being a Regional Health System (RHS) has redefined the way we provide patient care and collaborate with our partners and stakeholders. We emphasise on patient-centred care as we move to make healthcare safe, reliable and seamless for our patients. What this means is care from the patient’s perspective instead of the provider’s.
While we are the RHS for the Central region in Singapore, our care reaches out island-wide. Our nine polyclinics, for instance, are also spread across three other regional health clusters namely, Alexandra Health in the north, and the National University Health System and Jurong Health Services in the west. And our two national specialty centres – the Institute of Mental Health and National Skin Centre – serve patients from all over Singapore, not just those from the Central zone.
With Singapore’s rapidly ageing population and more people developing chronic diseases, the old hospital-centric model of care is no longer sustainable. We need to – and must – work with our partners and stakeholders in the primary, acute and step-down care sectors.
Likewise, a doctor-centric service must give way to a multi-disciplinary approach to enhance chronic disease management and improve population health. Now nurses, allied health professionals and others will certainly have more important roles to play as we shift towards team-based care.
Beyond the hospital walls, team-based care is also about collaborating with our RHS alliance partners – who include primary care providers, community hospitals, nursing homes, home care providers, hospices and other social service providers – to provide care for the community.