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Over the last few months, I have coincidentally been addressing the subject of medical test reports with some new patients and survivors. I would like to take this opportunity to share this matter with all of you.
Some new patients and survivors do not possess a copy of their medical test report like MRI, CT Scan, X-Ray etc nor ask the consulting doctors for it. The medical report belongs to you too and you have a right as a patient to ask for a copy for your own reference and retention. I would advise that each time you see your doctor for your medical test results that you ask him/her to print a copy for you.
The report details your latest medical condition. It is an important piece of document for when you should see another doctor or seek a 2nd opinion the report will come in very handy to give the other doctor a quick update of your condition without you having to go through another round of the same tests. And for those applying for a job which requires you to go for a medical examination the medical report will be useful to the doctor assessing you for employment fitness. The medical report will also come in handy in other situations when you need to produce it.
So, please do ensure you obtain a copy each time you see your doctor for your medical test results. However please note that only the medical report is available to us, X-ray films etc will remain with the hospital. And should you need the X-Ray film, you may need to purchase it from the hospital.
If your doctors are from different cluster hospitals, it is even more reason to ensure you have a copy of your medical report. Some of you for example see the ENT Doctor from TTSH whilst your Radiation Oncologist is from NCCS. Both TTSH and NCCS are from different cluster hospitals and they do not have a common shared database of your medical records. So you will need to produce your ENT report from TTSH to your Radiation Oncologist at NCCS and vice versa when you consult them. Similarly, if one of your doctors is from the private sector and the other is in one of the cluster hospitals, you will also face the same issue. And this is where some of you face the problem because without the medical test report on hand, the other doctor would sometime like you to undergo another test which you may already had undergone in the other hospital.
For your information, NCCS and SGH belong to the SingHealth Cluster, including KK Women & Children Hospital. The National Dental Centre, National Heart Centre, National Neuroscience Institute, Singapore National Eye Centre and the Polyclinics are also part of the SingHealth Cluster. TTSH comes under the National Healthcare Group. So is the Institute of Mental Health, National Skin Centre amongst others.
Therefore, if your ENT Doctor is say with SGH and your Radiation Oncologist is with NCCS, both doctors will be able to access your medical record on-line as they have a common database. Even then, you should still ask for a copy of your medical test report as you may never know when and what you will need it for in future. That is why I often advise new patients to ideally see doctors from the same cluster hospitals to avoid future hiccups. I hope this sharing has shed some light on the matter.
Calling himself a Nose Cancer Ambassador, Thiam Chye aims to de-mystify nose cancer by encouraging all survivors to share their personal experiences in their fight against cancer to enable new patients to undergo their treatment with courage and minimal pain and to lead a better quality of life on recovery. Should you wish to join the support group in its activities or need guidance on this article, please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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