Govt-owned ‘private’ hospitals

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With the federal and state governments and GLCs holding stakes in an increasing number of private hospitals, is there a conflict of interest?

Blog reader Ganesh shares his thoughts.

If you see the private hospitals, some of them are virtually owned either directly or indirectly by the government.

So, the government has absolutely no incentive to build more new government hospitals nor to upgrade existing government hospitals at all.

That is the biggest problems now. The (government-owned) ‘private’ hospitals are doing so well and the government is reaping so much of money from them that, in my humble opinion, there is a conflict of interest here.

Why should they even build or improve existing government hospitals?

Has anyone gone and seen the KL general hospital lately? It is shocking: the buildings look so old and run down and it is so disheartening to even enter the place. Even more so, when one is used to going to places like SJMC (SDMC now), to go to the KL GH is a sudden culture shock.

In other countries, for instance, the government hospitals and the private hospitals have really no difference. They both look posh and nice. For example, in the UK, I have been to many government NHS hospitals and they look like “hotels”. In other words, they even look better than our private hospitals here in Malaysia. The same with Singapore and Australia.

It is high time for a law to be passed that prohibits the government from owning or holding interests in private hospitals. Instead of spending tons of money building this and that, some an utter waste of money, we should be building more schools and government hospitals to cater for the poor and needy.

In fact, every state should have at least 10 large full-fledged government hospitals each.

It is high time we see something coming back from the taxes we pay.

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kee

At least tunglung and pavlova talked sense, that medical guy talked @#$… As we are well aware there are so many people around us spent all their life savings to get treatments from the private hospital just to have better services… My cousin in Hongkong could not believe it when i told him how much a graduate earns in Malasia and some readers here are like monyet kena belacan comparing the taxes we pay and those in the Western countries… To those naive and ignorant readers go and find out first how much a lawyer, an engineer, a clerk/officer in… Read more »

pavlova

Well, I am sure there are good government doctors somewhere in Msia. I have also heard of people praising the government hospitals. But don’t you think we can do better? Do you want to constantly be stagnant in the state of “Our public health system is much better than (insert 3rd world country here)”. Why do have to compare ourselves with Afghanistan, Zimbabwe? Why can’t we compare ourselves to Canada, Britain? Well if we are satisfied with where we are, then well, let’s just admit the fact and let’s not complain anymore. We just have to accept the ‘fate’. Oh,… Read more »

tunglang

We are supposed to talk about Gomen waste of scarce resources on investment in private hospitals. We are not arguing about who’s paying what for expensive medicare in private hospitals; the expensive choice is yours. Also, we can’t compare to Aussies or Brits, for that matter. We are still a 3rd world country getting below 3rd world salaries, so forget about comparing tax rates and high medicare. Gomen hospitals should give FREE treatments to any Ali, Ah Chong or Mutu, no argument about it. The rights is theirs. Rich or Not Rich. The crux of this discussion is what benefits… Read more »

SamG

Fully agree with what NudiBranch is saying. The Government should not provide totally free medical cover. If they charge a reasonable amount, then there will be less abuse. Ask yourself – How many times you have taken medication from the clinics and thrown it away?
If a reasonable fee is charged, then there is money to provide better services.
Most likely all of you who are complaining would be having private medical cover anyway.

Anti Cyber Trooper

Gerakan K…Where 1 Malaysia Clinics can do surgery like a hospital?

It is merely a clinic. Where got physio department? Where got labs?

SamG

All of you keep saying we pay taxes. but it is such a small amount of what Aussies or Brits pay. All Aussies pay 1.5% of Salary for Medicare. Assume min corruption here, are you willing to contribute? I pay 1/3 taxes here compared to Australia.

nudibranch

I am a govt doctor and to all those fools who are complaining, I just wish you knew how much the government subsidise our health care and how many of you FOOLS who are complaining here and can afford to go to a private hospital, come to seek almost FREE treatment in the govt hospital and still complain about it…… if you are not happy, please go seek treatment in Canada, Singapore, UK or Australia… I bet you, you will get royally ‘PR’ed !!!! …

kee

1st of all, i was told that Canada has no private hospitals and Canada has the best health care in the world… In another word, the Canadian government has the people at heart, they serve the people. Not like ours, they serve their own pockets and their own families… Actually, what do we get from the taxes we pay ya??? To begin with, we cant even have proper roads, the roads are all “ping ping pong pong”… The whole country is in a dire need to revamp… wonder that is possible… Will the dream of 13th GE come true for… Read more »

Gerakan K

The best things we can get from PR are free internet and no “saman ekor” if we vote PR in next GE !!!

What a lousy election manifesto !!!

ghkok

Hi Anil,

The article didn’t mention any examples. Perhaps it would be good to have some concrete examples of “govt-owned private hospitals” or some statistics of how many. Otherwise, everyone is just shooting in the dark.

Sewel

What did you expect. Only in Malaysia dude. I can assure you Pakatan Rakyat will have a long hard look at our health system especially at the crappy state of our kampung and rural hospitals and clinics….

semuanya OK kot

A great deal if capital and industry depends on your falling sick. Ask yourself why has it been so difficult to eliminate
– boric acid (in wet flour-based foods like noodles and some kueh)
– excessively sweet drinks
– transfat in our margarine (as done in other countries)
– beta-agonist in meat
– formaldehyde on fish
– GM foods
We hear only excuses even on measures for preventive health like controlling mosquitoes and rats. Compare this to the enthusiasm to authorise more high-tech medical facilities, especially surgical and for kidney patients.

JANTONG

The biggest government hospital that is privatised … has to be the Institute Jantung Negara. Shockingly they charged RM4500 for an angiogram when it would have cost about RM 3000 in a Penang private Hospital. IJN apparently belongs to the Ministry of Finance. ..the government. What rubbish is this. It’s free only for civil servants. And why the monopoly. I could have taken my uncle to Lam Wah Ee and paid far less if the government wanted to foot the bill. The PR when they come to power must ensure that either prices remain reasonable or ….just shut down this… Read more »

tunglang

THAT’S WHERE THE MONEY IS! Which means our Gomen For Private Profits, Not For The People’s Welfare! This is ironic, since we elect them to run this country, not to profit from the people. There are other worthy industries that Gomen / GLCs can effectively involve in and benefit the already suffering people. Not in private hospitals which are there for the sole purpose of money-making by rich private investors not lacking or scarce in Malaysia. In the end, the general population having to pay higher medical fees! This is absurd, uncaring and leeching strategy. Still Gomen has the bile… Read more »

Gerakan K

Conflict of interest ???

I don’t think so. Look at plenty of 1Malaysia clinics being setup to serve the people. Where is conflict ???

Francis Ngu

Malaysia cannot just rest on its laurels in primary care and life outcomes of past decades. The needs of the general population are beginning to overwhelm the supply side. while there is a place for private hospitals in a free-market economy, the public sector health care may never be pushed aside. The right balance between public and private has now been clearly lost and will take a decade to rectify. 70-80% of the people may be suffering from the negligent under provision of public sector health care; the situation getting worse by the day. I am posting several of my… Read more »

cslee

JCORP who and what are they? How many now have they own and do you know that their charges isn’t cheap? I guess they are more interested to … make more with (seemingly) no regards of the most important thing that medical profession or healthcare is concern.

Pala Richie

Not enough screwing the gov hospts, now they want to screw the private hopst, god bless me! please!

Where is my right?…

pavlova

As a health professional working in an OECD country, I am in strong objection that healthcare should be privatised heavily. In many ex Commonwealth OECD countries, the public health system is still the main system that is provided to the general public. That should be the main system where people should go to for their primary health needs. The private hospitals are set up so that patients who wish to have elective surgeries, like breast reconstruction, vasectomies etc can do so without having to be in the waiting list. Patients who need major surgeries like hip replacements etc can also… Read more »

kl_boy

Healthcare is a growing business. It will be a good money spinner for Khazanah after the failure of several of their high profile ventures. Anyway, it’s Health Ministry that should be pushing for Govt Hospital improvement. I somehow don’t think that’s their priority right now…..

Antares

Ganesh… you hoping to stumble on a gang of caring, compassionate, considerate and community-minded pirates?