Singapore Media Watch

Monday, November 06, 2006

A hospital stay and a glimpse of Singapore -

It tells a lot about people's pain and stoicism, family bond and society's changes

By Seah Chiang Nee
Nov 5, 2006

Every stay I have had in a hospital here – believe me, there have been quite a few in the past 25 years – has been a lesson for me about life.

It's like opening the window to a changing society and allows me to catch a glimpse of Singaporeans’ pain and stoicism, as well as family ties, ethnic bonds and human care.

Recently, I spent three days at the Singapore General Hospital for a colonoscopy and treatment for a colon infection, and the experience was no difference.

(For the uninitiated Malaysian, the SGH is the largest hospital here where, sooner or later, every Singaporean or a friend or relative – and quite a few foreigners, too – will spend time in.)

As I lay on my bed in ‘C’ ward, I had another opportunity to watch, in-between my antibiotic drips, some of my fellow patients and the scores of visitors who came to see them.

When you're staring at the ceiling for most of the day, you have a lot of time to watch, listen and reflect about the ordinary folks around you.

As with scores of previous stays, I have accumulated an impression about the changes in our society. (Read more...)

This was published in The Sunday Star on Nov 5, 2006
Mr Seah Chiang Nee is a veteran journalist and owner of the award-winning political website ""


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