NOTICE PAPER NO. 1330
NOTICE OF QUESTION FOR WRITTEN ANSWER
FOR THE SITTING OF PARLIAMENT ON 12 SEPTEMBER 2022
Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament
Ms Nadia Ahmad Samdin
MP for Ang Mo Kio GRC
Question No. 2110
To ask the Minister for Health (a) how many individuals have sought immediate crisis care from public healthcare institutions for mental health care support between 2019 to 2021; (b) what is the current number of qualified primary care doctors who are able to provide mental health treatment in the community; and (c) whether there are plans to reduce the average waiting time to see a psychologist or psychiatrist in public healthcare institutions.
The Institute of Mental Health (IMH) provides immediate crisis care for patients with mental health conditions. Between 2019 to 2021, IMH saw an average of 13,000 individuals annually at their Emergency Services. Close to 22% of these attendances were referrals from the other public hospitals.
Patients who require mental health support and present at public hospitals are assessed by the medical team and those with more severe conditions will be given earlier appointments or be admitted for closer monitoring.
Mental health services are also available in the community and primary care, provided by the polyclinics, GPs, the community outreach teams (CREST) and the allied health-led community intervention teams (COMIT). As of 31 December 2021, there were over 310 trained Mental Health General Practitioners (MHGPP) and 14 polyclinics that provide mental health services in the primary care setting. We have been expanding services in the community through increasing the number of teams and service providers. By strengthening mental health services in the community, persons with mild to moderate mental health needs can be cared for in the community.