Patients’ blue Christmas

I can’t help but think about how favourably ST painted the hospitals facing a “severe bed crunch’’. Instead of castigating the health authorities for poor foresight and planning, the tone appears to be pretty congratulatory, applauding the hospitals for taking “unusual steps’’. And it’s not as though the bed crunch is a new thing. You would have thought the problem would have been licked a long time ago. How many beds were there in the past, say in 2008, and now?

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Public hospitals facing severe bed crunch?

The latest serious hot topic in cyberspace now – other than the multi-million kidnapping case or some unhappy cinema patrons at Rex Cinema, is the dearth of beds in government run public hospitals. Many citizens have expressed outrage on this latest worrisome situation. We are talking about NOT one but all the government run public hospitals in our Singapore. How could it be? What happened to our legion of planners and scholars taking huge salary and yet fail to deliver this basic service to our citizens which we have always taken for granted until recently? It seems that this is one of the latest trends happening in Singapore where “Things Are Falling Apart!” Realy langgar!

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Govt to set ‘minimum wage’ for 2 industries

The government is setting “minimum wages” for the cleaning and security industries but has refused to acknowledge so because of the oidious connotation of the term “minimum wage” among businessmen and investors.It will begin by legislating what is effectively a minimum wage for the cleaning sector. It will introduce an amendment to the law this month which, when passed by Parliament and implemented, will set a tiered wage system for different jobs in the sector. This was announced on Wednesday (8 Jan) by DPM Tharman who is also the Finance Minister.

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The police got easy credit and this case allowed them to redeem themselves after the recent Little India langgar fiasco. They needed this publicity badly. They are desperate for it. Now they feel vindicated! It’s because kidnappers are amateurs and according to a local, popular blogger who wishes to remain anonymous this is how the kidnappers should have done it.

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Hospital Shame

The Independent Singapore did an interview with Dr Tan Lip Hong on the bed crunch at some of our hospitals, with the Changi General Hospital setting up an air-conditioned tent to accommodate patients. Dr Tan has worked as a GP in the heartlands for the past 19 years. He is also one of the authors of the Singapore Democratic Party’s healthcare plan.

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Mas Selamat’s son detained for two years

The son of Singapore Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) leader Mas Selamat Kastari has been detained on a two-year Order of Detention under the Internal Security Act (ISA) for his involvement in the organisation. The Ministry of Home Affairs said today (Jan 9) that Masyhadi Mas Selamat, 25, was placed under detention on Nov 21 last year. He was arrested in Indonesia on Oct 20 and deported to Singapore later that month. Masyhadi was schooled in JI religious schools in Indonesia from age 13 and underwent paramilitary training there when he was older. He formally became a member of the JI terrorist organisation when he turned 21. Among other things, he conducted JI surveillance activities and disseminated radical propaganda online in support of jihadist violence.

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Secondary school students to be banded instead of graded for CCAs

The Education Ministry is doing away with grades A1 to E8 for students’ co-curricular programmes. Instead, students will be placed in three bands — Excellent, Good or Fair — at the end of secondary school. The Excellent band will carry two bonus points, which can be used for entry into tertiary institutions.

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MOE review to make internships, workplace learning central to poly, ITE education

An Education Ministry review that has just been launched is set to make apprenticeships and learning in real-life settings much more important in polytechnic and ITE education. The review will initially focus on building and construction, nursing, aerospace, manufacturing and early childhood education. The review committee held its first dialogue with polytechnic and ITE students today (Jan 9) to get their views. Senior Minister of State for Education Indranee Rajah, who heads the committee, said they will be studying countries like Germany and Switzerland, and their successful models of apprenticeship in education.

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