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10 Mar 2019

20th Feb 2019

          The Ministry of Health (MOH) has noted and understands the concerns in relation to both the decision of the Disciplinary Tribunal (DT) in Dr Lim Lian Arn’s case, and the imposition of a $100,000 fine against Dr Lim.  Sentences have to be commensurate with the circumstances of each case. 

2.        Whilst both Dr Lim and the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) may have accepted the sentence, the decision in this case carries with it much wider professional practice implications and also has an impact on future cases.  MOH is of the view that this decision should be reviewed.  We are concerned that this case should not be viewed as or lead to the practice of defensive medicine which would have an adverse impact on patient and clinical safety.  There have also been questions raised about the liability imposed in this case.

3.       In light of the above circumstances, MOH has requested for SMC to apply to Court for the decision to be reviewed, and for the appropriate revisions to be made. It will be good to have the matter thoroughly reviewed in Court.  SMC has agreed, and has filed the application in Court to seek permission from the Court to have this decision reviewed despite the time for appeal having passed.

4.        MOH will continue to engage with healthcare professionals to have greater clarity and balance in the practice and processes in the medical community, so as to enhance patient safety and, at the same time, also keep overall healthcare costs affordable.