Macau | Big subsidies to Kiang Wu Hospital only short-term solution - Medical expert 

The large amount of government subsidies provided to private Kiang Wu Hospital should only be a short-term solution, a medical expert told MNA

Macau (MNA) – A medical expert has told Macau News Agency (MNA) that the large amount of government subsidies provided to private hospital Kiang Wu is “understandable” due to the large number of patients sent there from the public Hospital Conde de São Januário (CHCSJ).

Recent government data reveal that Kiang Wu and related associations received some MOP717.2 million in financial support in 2017, or 90 per cent of all support provided by the Health Bureau last year.

“I think that in a way it does help patients in Macau, since CHCSJ is so crowded and busy, and this way they can get medical services, with the government subsidising those very expensive drugs,” Dr. Gregory Cheng of the Macau University of Science and Technology (MUST) Faculty of Health Sciences told MNA.

However, the medical expert believes the government should focus more in long-term solutions such as hiring more medical professionals and building more medical facilities.

Works are currently ongoing for the Seac Pai Van health complex, said to be operational in the beginning of 2019 – the same year the new Islands District Medical Complex is estimated to be completed in Cotai.

“To solve the manpower problem, there are several ways. First, you can train your own medical doctors, so there has been talks about creating medical schools in Macau for many years and the government seems to agree to that but it is a slow process.” said Dr. Cheng.

“The other way is to ‘import’ doctors and experienced professionals to carry out the service. For me, if you have the money, this is not a problem, so it depends upon how much the government wants to do in getting their priorities straight,” he added.

The haematology expert also believes that the MSAR Government’s current finances should be enough to cover more state-of-the art equipment, with current medical services being mostly technologybased.

“One argument the government has always used is that we can spend a lot of money hiring a large team and all the equipment but Macau does not have the patient numbers to justify the service.” the doctor explains. “So, it might be more economical to send them to Hong Kong to get top class services – but I have some problem with that kind of argument.”

[Edited by Sheyla Zandonai]