The American healthcare system is one that seems to be under constant scrutiny. If we’re being honest, pretty much every healthcare system in the world seems to be under scrutiny. Unless you’re paying to go private, there always seems to be something wrong. But with millions of people to treat each day, and the population growing each day, it is easy to see why sometimes the healthcare system does mess up. But is it fair of us to use this as an excuse for their wrong doings? Well this is something that has long been debated for years. A lot of people believe the healthcare system should always be doing its best and never making mistakes, this is what they’re there for after all. Others realise the strain that it is put under on a daily basis, and believe that issues are going to keep arising whether we like it or not. But what are your views? If you’re undecided about whether our healthcare system is doing more bad than good, then we’re here to help you make a decision.
We might as well start with the bad first. There is a fair amount of bad going on in the healthcare system, and don’t the media let us know about it. One of the biggest issues we’re facing at the minute is the shortage of staff compared to the rising number of the population. But how can this be helped when doctors have to go to college for seven years before they qualify, and nurses have to attend college before they can too. It is this long winded process that can sometimes put people off the prospect of becoming either a nurse or doctor. The UK’s healthcare service, the NHS, is in an ever worst state of affairs in terms of staffing. They’re having to bring over nurses and doctors from foreign countries, but now even that is not working due to the fears they will be thrown back out again due to brexit. But, the US isn’t far off this. The only difference is the fact that our healthcare service is privatised. This generally means there is more people pumping money into the service to try and find the best service possible. But due to the staffing issues, the best service is not always given.
The staffing issues leads us on to another common issue found in the healthcare service. Blunders made by the doctors and nurses. This could be anything from the wrong diagnosis, the wrong medication given, or releasing a patient too early. You’d be surprised at how many people actually have this done to them. But this is where the argument comes into play that it is not the doctors or nurses fault. They’re doing the best they can, and they spend 12 hour shifts rushing around constantly trying to make sure everyone is cared for. Surely this is going to lead to a mistake or two along the way? But then this is where the bad press comes from.
The press rarely ever seems to focus on the good and hard work the healthcare service is doing. They just wait for something to go wrong so they can scrutinise them. A lot of people go down the route of suing as well, and so they should. Even though it is nearly always the case that it was a complete accident, medical negligence is still a huge issue, and one that needs to be solved sooner rather than later. A medical malpractice lawyer will see hundreds and hundreds of cases each year about different things that have gone wrong with people due to medical negligence. The healthcare system then ends up having to pay out large amounts in order to cover the compensation. It is often the case that they pay more than they should just to try and keep the victim from going to the press about their issue. The last thing they need is bad press.
The good often outweighs the bad when it comes to our healthcare service. They save millions of lives each year, without them we wouldn’t be where we are today. One of the best things about our healthcare service is also one of the worst. Having it privatised and having to pay for medical treatments means you see a lot less people walking in with really minor injuries that could be treated at home. One of the biggest issues the NHS has is their waiting rooms being clogged up with people who don’t even need to be there. This is purely because it is free. But, the fact that you do have to pay so much for healthcare treatments is one of the reasons why so many people in the US die each year.
One of the best things our healthcare service brings us is the cure and prevention of injuries and diseases. There’s so much extensive research going on each year that saves the lives of people all around the world. America is renowned for its medical capabilities, so many people fly out here year round to get the specialist treatments their countries can’t offer. The fact we’re at the forefront of medicine is pretty great. The money being pumped into the research is constant, and each day big strides are being made to cure some of the worst diseases known to man.
One of the final things that is just so great about healthcare is the hard work and dedication the staff put in to make sure they give the best care possible. At this time of year most of us will be off for the holidays and enjoying time with their family. But this is something nurses and doctors and other healthcare professionals just don’t get to do. They work hard and long shifts, and are often on their feet for most of the day or night. They’re always striving to make sure they do the best for the people they’re caring for, and that’s something that really needs to be admired.
When people talk about expats, images of the retired often spring to mind. But there are plenty of reasons why people may move to another country at any point during your life. Embarking on a journey to another country can be extremely daunting, especially if you’re used to having lived in your country of birth for the majority of your life. You can move to almost anywhere you please and the place that you are used to or have been raised in may not be the location that your personality is best suited to. So, always bear in mind that the world is your oyster. There are 195 unique countries out there, each with their own pros and cons. But there are certain countries that retain popularity for expats year after year. Belgium, Malaysia, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Hong Kong all prove amiable choices for various reasons. But for now, let’s focus on Singapore. After all, this area’s benefits are reflected in the soaring prices for expats. According to the Economic Intelligence Unit’s (EIU) latest league tables, Singapore has retained its position as the most expensive city in the world for expatriates for the fourth year in a row. Here are a few reasons why this investment is entirely worth it!
Singapore is densely populated, so most accommodation is relatively small and majoritively takes the form of high-rise apartments or condos. So, if you are looking for a large family home with a garden, the inner city probably isn’t the place for you. However, you will have more luck in the suburbs. If you’re happy living in a smaller space and frequenting the numerous green spaces that the city has to offer rather than confining yourself to a private backyard, then you could easily fit right into the inner city. There is plenty of housing available, as tower blocks and other highrise developments spring up around the entire city. If you want a privately owned property, you will be able to find one. These increasingly have access to pools, gyms and function rooms on site. Rent is typically high, as land is high demand, especially in the city centres or desirable neighbourhoods such as Orchard Road and Holland Village. However, you can lower the cost by making the most of an HDB (or government owned) property. For more information on hdb resale price, check out this page of Singapore property news.
High costs of living in this Singapore fall down to more than high demand on space alone. The island has surprisingly low crime rates, making it an extremely safe place to live. Though there aren’t all that many police officers and police cars about, you can feel comfortable walking the streets. In the whole of 2016, there were just over 30,000 crimes committed by a population of more than five million and the majority of crime in the area remain commercial offences over the internet. Already low crime rates concerning violent or serious property offences, housebreaking, theft, and unlicensed money lending harassment have decreased, and risks of terrorism are some of lowest in the world. One area of safety to watch out for is road safety, as pedestrians and cyclists do not have right of way on the roads. You should also use dedicated crossings to make your way from one side of the road to another. Bear in mind that cyclists may use the pavement and as pavements are often narrow (for the sake of sparing space), you should be extra wary when walking. However, Singapore are trialling new safety measures, such as flashing pavements at crossing spaces.
Healthcare in Singapore is astounding. It ranks sixth in the World Health Organisation’s ranking of health care systems! It largely falls under the jurisdiction of Singapore Government’s Ministry of Health, which places strict rules on compulsory savings, subsidies and price controls in order to ensure that it is accessible and affordable. Sadly, there is no free healthcare system, so you will have to pay for treatment, however, this is mainly to reduce overuse of the healthcare system rather than being instated purely as a means of profit. If you have the means available to you, you can make use of the completely private sector in Singapore, which will reduce waiting times for surgery and other procedures dramatically. All in all, any healthcare experience that you may have in Singapore is more likely than not to be positive.
As aforementioned, you should be wary when cycling or walking in Singapore. However, the road networks and public transport systems are extremely well developed. Public transport is surprisingly cheap, and new links are being regularly built. Taking taxi cabs is also an affordable option. If you plan on driving, you are looking at spending more cash. There are heavy customs fees, high taxes and insurance generally cost a lot. To add to this, there are high parking fees and toll charges. However, with the brilliant public transport available, this isn’t absolutely necessary and could just be seen as an optional extra.
Things to Do
There’s a multitude of things to do year round in Singapore, so whatever your tastes or interests, there will be something to please you. If you’re into art, the state has a national art week in January, consisting of over one hundred individual and distinct events including art fairs, gallery openings, art walks, and interactive exhibits. Specialist talks inform you of Singapore’s art history as well as the direction that local art is taking in the present day. Other cultural days out can see you immerse yourself in nature. Singapore’s Botanic Gardens are a UNESCO world heritage site and rightfully so: over 60,000 plant species make it a paradise for anyone in touch with nature and the natural world. The orchid gardens are beautiful beyond belief and there are rubber seedlings that have come on leaps and bounds since their transportation to Singapore from London’s Kew Gardens. Occasionally free concerts are held in the park too! If music is more your thing, you may want to check out ZoukOut, one of Asia’s largest music festivals. This expansive outdoor beach party draws DJs and music fans from around the world and is commonly referred to as Singapore’s biggest party. Techno, trance and hip-hop combine to put together one of the most exciting weekends you could wish to be a part of. For partygoers, the city’s nightlife is amongst the best. Zouk (the club which inspired the name of ZoukOut festival) is Singapore’s central nightclub and revellers can’t seem to get enough of it. If you prefer alternative sounds, head over to hipster bar Blu Jaz Cafe in the Kampong Glam Area. Upstairs you can find hip-hop, jungle and unique events. More casual drinkers who want a tasty beverage in a more laid back atmosphere have a whole host of options too. Bespoke cocktail bars are springing up around the city. Some require reservations, while others are more relaxed, allowing you to walk right in, so always call up before heading out to reduce chances of disappointment or being turned away.
There are numerous festivities throughout the year in Singapore. Chinese New Year is one of the biggest and falls early in the year, between January and February (as it runs on a lunar cycle). Many individuals celebrate by meeting up with family and friends for steamboat dinners and offering loved ones ang boa (red pockets containing money). There is also an annual celebration called River Hongboa, which is an exciting festival held on the floating platform at Marina Bay. The Chingay Parade, filled with stilt walkers and other costumed performers is also one to watch out for. Later in the year in September, the mid-Autumn festival sees people gather together to celebrate the harvest by carrying lanterns and eating traditional mooncakes. If you’re a big fan of Christmas, don’t fret. The event is just as big in Singapore as any other celebration. While there’s no chance of real snow and reindeers are highly unlikely, but you will definitely be able to get plenty of gingerbread, mulled wine and other festive treats at the city’s Christmas Wonderland. This beautiful array of over 20,000 lights is set up near the world renowned Garden by the Bay draws in around 1.6 million people visiting the event each and every year. An astounding ice palace is home to a rink and has a snow playground too! So the region’s warm and humid weather won’t stop you from getting your dose of frosty fun. These are just a few of the varied holidays and festivities. Singapore is extremely multicultural, so there are many more celebrations to be experienced!
As you can see, Singapore has so many benefits. It’s not surprising that so many people place it top of their list of places to live. Its rich culture, history and constantly expanding and improving structure see it becoming highly desirable. So if you’re considering a move, start looking sooner rather than later.