Jun 14, 2011
Rope in women, new citizens for health-care 'NS'
IT IS heartening to learn that the Ministry of Health is looking into the manpower needs of the health-care industry ('Industry weighs in on nursing home review'; yesterday).
Given that health care and long-term care of our elderly are two important issues our country is facing, perhaps we should accord them the same importance as our nation's defence.
We could consider introducing national service in the public health sector for our women and for new citizens who are beyond the age of military service. They could then take on auxiliary nursing and health-care roles.
We could have a health-care sector modelled after our military, with regulars who are full-time professionals providing the expertise and leadership, and the rest making up the bulk of the 'caring' force.
This will provide a long-term solution to the industry's manpower needs, reduce our reliance on foreign labour, potentially lead to lower costs, and allow women to contribute to the nation's Total Defence.
Lim Pei Qin