25 September 2018 | News
Survey shows high fear of cancer, heart attacks and diabetes, with many Singaporeans pessimistic about their health status and unsure of the best place to turn for advice. Demand for personal medical case management, new cancer treatment technologies and personalised diagnosis is high across every demographic.
Singapore – A new survey commissioned by Medix has uncovered a range of attitudes towards the diagnosis and treatment of health conditions in Singapore. Across every demographic there is a pessimism towards personal heath and fear around being diagnosed with cancer. Many Singaporeans are proactive with seeking second opinions and undertaking physical examinations, but there is a strong desire for more personalised advice and treatment options. The study reveals men (53%) are more worried about strokes than women (32%), while cancer is the biggest worry for both, with heart attacks (51%) and diabetes (44%) the next highest concerns. Worryingly, only 58% feel their GP is providing them with sufficient information to prevent diseases. In the case of receiving a severe medical diagnosis, 87% would seek a second opinion.
Residents from all demographics show a strong understanding of the importance of genetic testing (78%) and regular physical check-ups (60%), yet there remains a strong desire for further information and services to prevent serious, medical conditions. 78% state that they would be interested in personal medical case management in the case of a serious illness, and 86% would like a multi-disciplinary approach to treatment. An overwhelming 91% would look for information on new technologies that treat cancer.
When it comes to seeking advice around specialists, less than half (41%) ask their GP for advice, with 14% looking online for recommendations. In regards to the value of specialists, 3 in 4 are confident of the answers provided by them. Surprisingly, 46% feel that the choice of specialist and hospital are of equal importance for the medical outcome. When it comes to satisfaction of healthcare service provision, both the pubic (67%) and private (68%) sectors are seen of equal importance.
“There is a clear demand for more information around the options available when it comes to healthcare in Singapore. One of the most important steps when tackling health problems is to be as prepared as possible, so preventative measures, regular relevant check-ups, additional medical opinions, and consultations with the right range of specialists is the ideal approach,” said Sigal Atzmon, CEO of Medix. “Knowledge is power, and making educated, objective choices should be Singaporeans priority. Everyone from insurers to doctors to government should be offering the necessary resources to provide these options and ensure that everyone is confident about being able to access them.”
While the survey shows a widespread fear of cancer diagnosis, less than half undergo cancer related prevention and early diagnosis tests. For example, only a worrisome 37% of female respondents undergo breast examinations and/or Pap Smears, which are known to save lives. Only 29% of respondents undergo liver function tests, alongside 21% undergoing thyroid function tests.
The survey was carried out with 600 respondents from diverse backgrounds in regards to income, age and gender. A presentation deck outlining the results in detail can be provided on request.