NOTICE PAPER NO. 1611
NOTICE OF QUESTION FOR WRITTEN ANSWER
FOR THE SITTING OF PARLIAMENT ON 9 JANUARY 2023
Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament
Ms Hazel Poa
Non-Constituency Member of Parliament
Question No. 2523
To ask the Minister for Health (a) in each year from 2011, what are the numbers and percentages of cases where hospitals engage authorised debt collection agencies to collect the arrears on their behalf; (b) under what circumstances will they do so; (c) what is the median hospital bill size and arrears owed in such cases; and (d) whether debt collection agencies will be engaged even when the patient is applying for MediFund and other forms of financial assistance.
From 2017 to 2021, the median number of bills followed up upon by collection agencies (CAs) was 194,740 (2.44% of total bills). These outstanding bills had a median outstanding amount of $103.86.
CAs are engaged after patients have been unresponsive to reminders via SMS, phone calls and letters for around 3 months. Patients applying for financial assistance will not be followed up with by CAs.