(Source: www.straitstimes.com)

SINGAPORE – A security guard who collapsed while on duty at Gleneagles Hospital will have his medical bill paid for by the hospital.

An appeal had been set up on crowdfunding site Give.Asia to help pay the medical bill for the guard, 55-year-old Thomas Lukose. He suffered a heart attack on Sept 12 at Gleneagles Hospital while on night duty and was immediately taken to the hospital’s emergency department.

Though his family wanted to transfer him to the National Heart Centre Singapore the next day, as his insurance covered him for only subsidised care, the heart centre had no spare bed in its intensive care unit.

Mr Lukose later received open-heart surgery, with three coronary artery bypass grafts, at Gleneagles Hospital.

While the surgeon who treated him, Dr Sriram Shankar, did not charge for his services, Mr Lukose was billed $78,000 by the hospital, $13,500 of which was covered by his work insurance.

The crowdfunding appeal raised more than $30,000 as of Friday morning (Oct 13).

In a letter to The Straits Times published on Friday, Mr Phua Tien Beng – the acting chief executive officer for the Singapore operations division of Parkway Pantai, which Gleneagles is under – said Mr Lukose received timely and expert care from Gleneagles’ doctors and staff, and made an excellent recovery.


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Responding to a commentary on Wednesday by The Straits Times senior health correspondent Salma Khalik – which suggested that the hospital consider waiving the remainder of Mr Lukose’s hospital bill not covered by insurance and MediShield Life – Mr Phua said: “Having reviewed the case, we have decided that the hospital should cover his outstanding medical bills.”

He added: “It is the right thing to do. We regret the anxiety caused.”

He said Mr Lukose and his family have accepted the offer and have “very generously diverted the money raised through crowdfunding to the next person in need”.

More Info: www.straitstimes.com