The Ministry of Health announced that it will reorganise the public healthcare system into three integrated clusters to better meet the nation's future healthcare needs, such as an ageing population, increased chronic disease burned and growth in healthcare manpower and spending.

This move will see the merging of SingHealth with Eastern Health Alliance (EHA) in the Eastern Region, National Healthcare Group (NHG) with Alexandra Health System (AHS) in the Central Region, and the National University Health System (NUHS) with JurongHealth in the Western Region (see table at end of article). Existing polyclinics will also be reorganised, with the National University Polyclinics (NUP) formed as Singapore's third polyclinic group.

SingHealth Group CEO Prof Ivy Ng will lead the Eastern Region. SingHealth's merge with EHA will see the healthcare group welcoming back Changi General Hospital, and transferring their staff in Geylang Polyclinic to NHG Polyclinics and staff in Queenstown Polyclinic to NUP.

Prof Ng said, "This merger of SingHealth and EHA will be beneficial for patients. SingHealth will benefit from the strengths of CGH and EHA. They are pioneers in developing the regional health system (RHS) for residents in the East - building strong partnerships with nearby healthcare providers and the community.

"The merger will facilitate the sharing of best practices across all our institutions. CGH's leadership in disciplines like Geriatrics, Sports Medicine, Emergency Medicine and others will complement SingHealth's range of clinical services. Our Geylang and Queenstown Polyclinics have contributed much to how primary care has evolved in SingHealth's continuum of care. They are in good stead to bring value to their new clusters in transforming the primary care landscape."

The reorganisation is expected to be completed by early 2018.

Minister for Health Mr Gan Kim Yong said that with the integrated clusters, "I am confident that we will be able to better optimise resources and capabilities, and provide more comprehensive and patient-centred care to meet Singaporeans' evolving needs."