SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2013 MCI (P) 197/03/2013
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A place where ideas grow The opening of Academia
New look clinics Outpatient clinics get fitted with age-friendly features
Sailing the course from nurse to doctor
SGH offers Singapore's first scholarship for Doctor of Nursing Practice
new look clinics
outpatient clinics get age-friendly
outpatient pharmacy rides the radio waves
03 06 08 10
a place where ideas grow
The opening of Academia
a legacy beyond SARS Dr Ling Ai Ee's contribution to public health
in every issue 11 12 14 18 19 20
spree in action quality pulse campus buzz time out your take the last page
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
President Tony Tan trying out the laparoscopic box trainer guided by Prof London Ooi as Health Minister Gan Kim Yong looked on
A place where ideas grow In July, we welcomed the newest addition to SGH Campus – Academia! Located near Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School and nestled among our institutions, it is a physical reinforcement of our status as an Academic Medical Centre.
Advisor Tan-Huang Shuo Mei Contributors Estee Chan, Geoffrey Gui, Chia Kuok Wei, Ratna Abdul Rahman, Vanessa Peters, Jennifer Wee, Michelle Scully, Goh Sai Luan Distribution General Services Dept, Helen Yang On the Cover Dr Ling Ai Ee speaks on biosafety and her first love on Page 6 and 7. ----------Life@SGH Campus is published every two months in print and online by the SGH Communications Department
The combination of SGH’s Pathology Department, research, training and education facilities in one place, offers rich opportunities for a collision of scientists, researchers, educators and students to create an exciting energy.
Making sparks fly
Academia is home to 1,500 healthcare professionals and is purposely designed to encourage collaboration and spark a lively sharing of ideas, knowledge and information leading to clinically impactful projects. To achieve this, functional spaces such as special dry labs, meeting rooms and conference facilities are shared. Beautiful gardens dotting levels three, six and seven allow for casual meeting points. Bridges on levels eight and 10 linking the clinical laboratories to research departments provide more random interconnected spaces. Fun ‘huddle rooms’ exist to ignite creative thinking.
Training on home ground
Academia provides an environment conducive to nurturing the next generation of doctors, nurses, allied health and other healthcare professionals. It also offers researchers a stimulating environment to improve diagnosis and treatment. The advanced facilities in the Pathology laboratories enhance the diagnostic process and patient care in SGH as well as the other institutions that use the laboratories’ services.
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A place where ideas grow
Simulated wards help trainee nurses transfer their skills to a clinical setting
Research in motion
Academia is also home to SingHealth’s research laboratories and research core platforms which offer state-of-the-art facilities and services. These, together with a strong
partnership with Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School, equate a researcher’s dream place to work. The concentration of capabilities fosters collaboration with other leading academic institutions and national research agencies.
Academia’s research platforms: SingHealth Tissue Repository the largest tissue repository in Singapore Advanced Molecular Pathology Laboratory a collaboration between SingHealth and A*STAR SingHealth Translational Immunology and Inflammation Centre a joint academic partnership with Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School to examine clinically important medical conditions Flow Cytometry cell sorting and analysis services
Training circuits (research and education)
Academia is the world’s largest and most comprehensive training facility for healthcare. It enables team-based training for medical, nursing and allied health staff and is fully wired to allow live streaming and recording of training sessions to enhance learning.
SingHealth Experimental Medicine Centre Singapore’s most comprehensive animal-based research facility Clinical pharmacology analysis of drugs in relation to genetics Singapore Eye Research Institute a leading centre for eye and vision research in Asia POLARIS collaboration between A*STAR’s Genome Institute of Singapore and SingHealth
Bio-Medical Skills Laboratories Computer Simulation Skills Training Lab
Mini Hospital enables hands-on team-based training Training Circuits
Simulated SOC Simulated Ward
Wet Skills Laboratory
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
Forging a new path home
The SGH Pathology Department’s new home at Academia brings its multi-site and spatially tight laboratories under one roof. Set up 110 years ago, the department has grown to become a regional leader in diagnostics and investigative medical sciences. It handled almost 12 million laboratory investigations last year which included complex cases from public and private hospitals in Singapore and the region. Pathology staff now have 50% more work space which houses 10 clinical laboratories and boasts a host of services and facilities. Automated systems, new test platforms and technology like digital pathology all mean that pathologists can provide enhanced and faster tests and diagnoses for patients.
Excuse me, are you a Doctor? Pathology Resident Dr Timothy Tay sheds some light on common misconceptions on Pathology. Pathology is all about research.
False. Pathology advances the understanding and treatment of diseases and so will hold more interest for those with a passion for research. However, like all disciplines in clinical Medicine, a pathologist’s work deals with service, research and education.
Pathology deals only with dead people.
False. While all pathologists must be able to perform post-mortem examinations on cadavers, most spend very little time on this. Instead, most spend a large part of their time in the area of histopathology. This deals with the diagnosis of tissue specimens or biopsies obtained through surgery and other procedures. Pathologists also have direct contact with patients. At SingHealth, pathologists perform Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology on patients to provide a diagnosis on the spot.
Pathologists work in isolation.
False. Pathologists constantly communicate and work in multidisciplinary teams with clinicians to solve diagnostic problems. For complex cases, this has proven to be of great benefit to patient management.
The Truth about Pathology?
Pathology literally means ‘the study of disease’ and is where basic science is skilfully applied to very real and often complex clinical problems. Whether it is an abnormal laboratory finding, lumps and bumps in the body or difficult diagnostic challenges, clinicians look to Pathologists for answers.
With such direct impact on patient care, every Pathologist is a true doctor in his own right. He is the doctor patients do not see. *Adapted from SingHealth Residency Medical Students Connect, July 2013
A legacy beyond SARS Dr Ling Ai Ee won national and international commendations for her work during the SARS pandemic in 2003. During the emerging crisis, she led the Virology Laboratory at SGH in growing the SARS virus for study by scientists around the world trying to find ways to fight the pandemic.
Her contributions to public health in the years since then may be even greater. Out of the limelight, she has been putting in place an infrastructure of Biosafety for technologists, researchers and clinicians in the research laboratories in Singapore.
“The clinical laboratories had well-established protocol and certification for Biosafety, and a system of training. Researchers, however, being focused on results, needed help to boost safety training in handling infectious matters such as bio-agents,” said Dr Ling. This point was brought home during the SARS outbreak. “Our microbiologists and technologists in the laboratories stepped up to the plate when we had to handle the virus. But we were all fearful for ourselves and our families. We weren’t practising in the proper way – I was collecting samples personally, in my car. There was a lack of systematic training and infrastructure.”
The need for tighter control in the research laboratories became even more obvious four months after Singapore was declared SARS free. A researcher in a NUS laboratory was infected by SARS from handling a contaminated vial. “I felt most useful during the SARS pandemic, I had fulfilled all my training and what I had learnt. But after the pandemic, I asked to move from Pathology into Biosafety even though there was no formal department then.”
A booster shot for Biosafety
“We sent a technologist and two clinical microbiologists for attachment at the Centre for Disease Control in the US. Through HMPD, our people went to top research institutes in the US and Canada, to learn the best practices.”
“While legislation can be punitive, the intention is to teach and develop a culture of safety, not to punish.”
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
Whilst actively developing protocols for Biosafety in SGH and research protocol review templates for scientists to apply for approval, Ministry of Health requested SGH to allow her to set up the Biosafety Branch. At this time, she was also on the National Biosafety Committee.
“Basically, we help to set up safety structure for all SingHealth labs. Our role is an advisory one and to serve as a conduit to the authorities. We just don’t want anybody to get hurt. We also work on developing a culture of workplace safety, through fairs and courses for our people.”
“This is a matter of public health. We can’t expect laboratory operators or users to take on the role of surveillance. I felt there was a need for better protection and training.”
A triumphant curtain call
On the recommendation of the National Biosafety Committee, the government enacted the Biological Agents and Toxins Act (BATA) in 2005, to regulate safe practices in the use and handling of these hazardous materials.
She studied medicine at the insistence of her father, a City Council public health officer. As a five-yearold, she accompanied him on his public inspection rounds, even watching him perform tracheotomy on diphtheria patients.
Dr Ling retires from SGH as Director, Biosafety this year. Her achievements are particularly impressive, for someone who went into medicine against her wishes.
But “music is my first love,” declared the accomplished concert pianist who has performed with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and the Singapore Lyric Opera, our homegrown western opera company.
Dr Ling contributed to the enactment of laws governing the safe handling of infectious matters such as bio-agents
“While legislation can be punitive, the intention is to teach and develop a culture of safety, not to punish. The authorities aim to build a rapport with users, as long as they demonstrate the intent to comply, are transparent and ready to learn from their mistakes,” explained Dr Ling. In SingHealth, Dr Ling also helped various institutions to vet their protocols to meet BATA requirements, and instituted about 10 bio-safety committees in the cluster. She also chaired the SingHealth and SGH Biosafety Committees.
“Music is for enjoyment. It is meditative and provides balance to my work. My best ideas for work, such as how to organise Biosafety in SingHealth, come when I am immersed in my music. Music provides perspective. It helps me to see things clearer and look ahead,” said the musician who holds a Licentiate of Royal Schools of Music, which qualifies her to perform and teach.
Outpatient clinics get age-friendly
Our outpatient facilities are receiving makeovers to make them more comfortable and easier for elderly patients and visitors. The new features include new furniture and use of colours and lighting. Starting with Clinics L, M and the Centre for Digestive and Liver Diseases, these initiatives will eventually be rolled out to all outpatient areas.
Way-finding Matching coloured corridors, doors and rooms help patients find their way
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
Warmer lighting in the waiting areas
Clearly marked reserved seats
Videos to teach patients the correct way to collect urine samples Wheelchair lots Lit directional signs within the clinic
Height adjustable examination couches
Hand railing along the walls provide additional support
Special weighing scale for the wheelchair bound
Outpatient Pharmacy rides the radio waves
The renovated SGH Outpatient Pharmacy now runs 23 counters, up from 14. Some 70% of patients now collect their medication within half an hour. Medication error from wrong selection is down to almost zero. This is all thanks to a new, high tech system which makes use of radio frequency signals. The new Automated Pharmacy Dispensing System (APDS) uses Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology to assemble medication and channel them to specific dispensing counters via a conveyor belt. The medication list in each patient’s prescription is scanned and stored in RFID tags which are placed in individual baskets. The tag then ‘talks’ to the automated dispensing system as it moves through the pharmacy, telling it to select the required medication and drop them into the basket.
Conveyor belt minimises staff movement
LED lights indicate location of required drugs
In the backroom, little white baskets sail merrily down conveyor belts. Each basket carries a cargo of packed prescriptions for a specific patient. At dispensing counters, pharmacists can be confident the right medications have been packed. One machine can automatically pick medicines packed in boxes and blister-packs, triggered by the RFID tag. At the manual pick stations, the RFID tagged baskets generate prescription tags which light up the containers with the required medication, guiding the staff to pick the right drugs. Pharmacy technician supervisor, Seah Sok Eng shares, “Before, we had to walk down the whole room to get a drug from a shelf; and new staff may not know where to find some of the drugs”. SGH is the first hospital in Singapore to use RFID technology for our pharmacy.
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
spree in action
Super Mum to the Rescue Dr Fua Tzay-Ping was on maternity leave and riding the MRT train with her family when an MRT staff appeared, shouting for any medical personnel to step forward. Dr Fua’s husband looked at her and said, “I know, just go”.
With her baby boy strapped to her, Dr Fua identified herself and was rushed towards the driver’s cabin. There, she discovered the captain had difficulty breathing. Her husband, clutching their three-year-old and five-year-old daughters in each hand, snaked through the crowd in the cabins trying to follow her. The family was reunited when they got off the train at Eunos station, together with the train captain. Dr Fua continued to render first aid and monitor his vitals while waiting for the ambulance to arrive. After the train captain was sent to hospital, Dr Fua and her family continued their journey.
“My children were worried for the train driver. ‘Mummy, is the man going to be ok?’” shared Dr Fua. “But in the end, the girls found it a fun adventure. It was so exciting for them – racing through the crowds and hopping on and off the trains,” she added. Being from the Department of Emergency Medicine, Dr Fua’s instincts kicked in. “It felt very natural, except it wasn’t in the hospital,” said the Associate Consultant. A great example to us and her kids, who will not easily forget the day the world got to see Mummy the Super Hero.
“My children were worried for the train driver. ‘Mummy, is the man going to be ok?' ”
Brought to you by Service Operations, a unit of Operations and Performance Management
Senior Nurse Manager Punasundri Thangaraju is a 2013 Quality Improvement (QI) Champion of the Year finalist. In charge of wards 53 O&G and 54N, her team initiated a project which got 40% more new mothers to forgo baby formulas and use only breast milk to feed their babies. They achieved this by implementing skin contact between mothers and their newborns.
1. How many years have you been involved in Quality Improvement and how did it begin? I started in 1995 and my first project was reducing vials used in giving BCG vaccinations. The team saved vaccine from being wasted and saved cost as well as manpower.
2. Is there a particular project that has left a deep impression on you?
The project on increasing the number of Same Day Admission (SDA) for O&G patients. This was special as we had strong support and participation from the O&G doctors. Other team members were from admission office and bed management. It was also great we created a room for SDA patients as there was no SDA centre then. We helped patients save cost and spend more time with loved ones and re-deployed manpower to other areas. The project won a merit award at the Ministry of Health’s Continuous Quality Improvement conference.
3. What qualities does a person need to make a QI project successful?
One needs to be open minded as there are no right or wrong answers. Being open to ideas from team members fosters team spirit which is essential to completing the project.
4. Do you have any advice for our colleagues when embarking on QI projects?
They should look at problems that need resolution and learn QI tools and techniques.
It is also important to have a good leader who can delegate tasks and encourage a sense of responsibility and pride in members for their involvement in the project.
Seeing is believing
When seeking to improve a process, one needs to truly understand the process and its problems by “Genchi Genbutsu” – to go and see for yourself how the work is being done on the ground. Never attempt to understand a process or resolve a problem from distance as things may not work the way you think they do!
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
in the number of falls
Falls are prevalent among the elderly, patients with poor balance and gait as well as drug-induced giddiness and haematology patients.
The Futurettes from Ward 53C and Ward 77H
ncidents of fall among patients are serious when they result in hip fractures or subdural hematomas. Such incidents were ranked as the second most serious reportable events by MOH in Year 2012. Hence The Futurettes team took the initiative to come up with solutions.
The team came up with several solutions for this problem. A Quality nurse was assigned for each ward, to be responsible for patient safety. All fall and near miss fall incidents were documented, examined and shared quickly, during roll call at ward level. Daily assessment of a patient's fall risk was regulated and the switching of patients' toilet frequency chart to an online platform allowed more time for patient care with higher efficiency. The result was an amazing 57% decrease in the number of falls. The Futurettes clinched Gold in the TE-IQC (Team Excellence Innovation & Quality Circle) for their project in May 2013.
Statistics have shown that our front counter service time is fast and efficient!
FRONT COUNTER CUSTOMERS STAFF
Letâ€™s take a walk to the counter.
When it gets busy, I have no time to record statistics!
So the statistics were not recorded during busy periods! The truth is found when we walk the ground!
campus buzz What benefits you the most? SingHealth and our employee’s union will introduce a Flexible Benefits Scheme (FBS) which starts on 1 January 2014. This was in response to last year’s Employee Engagement Survey. Staff said they would like some flexibility in using their employee benefits for other areas besides medical, dental and loans. Those on FBS will have a fixed amount set aside only for outpatient medical claims. They will be able to use the rest of the amount for a variety of expenses like travel, traditional Chinese medicine treatment and club membership fees. For more information, please check out People Connection’s home page under SingHealth Flexible Benefits Scheme.
You can now use the benefits to pay for your holidays
(Left) Mr Ng Puey Kwan
Relentless and endearing stars At the Long Service Awards ceremony recently, we celebrated the birth of 375 SGH stars who have been shining for at least 10 years. This year, for the first time in SGH history, we honoured a 60-year Long Service colleague. Mr Ng Puey Kwan, an orthopaedic technician, joined us at 18 and is now a well-loved master of his craft. We also paid tribute to five others who have been serving for 50 years.
A million flowers flower. Thoughts and well-wishes for organ and tissue donors were penned inside each flower. The transplant team visited various schools to raise awareness for the project and organ and tissue donation.
French installation artist Mademoiselle Maurice with members of the SingHealth Transplant team
More than a million flowers – 1,064,180 to be exact – made by you and students from various schools, now adorn our Arts Expression Wall. They were the results of Project ‘Thanks A Million!’, conceptualised by SingHealth Transplant team to pay tribute to organ and tissue donors both living and deceased, through the simple act of folding an origami
French installation artist, Mademoiselle Maurice, was invited to use the flowers to create a masterpiece portraying the gifts of life and hope at our Arts Expression Wall, with help from some students. The labour of love near block 1 will be up until December. Get a Transplant Awareness Butterfly pin for $3. Net proceeds go to TRUEfund which supports needy transplant patients. Email singhealth. email@example.com for enquries.
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
The Doctor of Nursing Practice Program What will the course comprise?
• Evidence based advanced nursing practice • Leadership skills • Healthcare policy • 1 major active learning project
Recipients of Singapore’s first scholarship for Doctor of Nursing Practice Program
Sailing the course from Nurse to Doctor The SingHealth Alice Lee Institute of Advanced Nursing has launched Singapore’s first scholarship for Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program under Duke University, School of Nursing. The DNP degree is a practice doctorate. Graduates use research to influence their practice.
The scholars - four Advance Practice Nurses from SGH and one from KKH, have already identified their interest in research areas such as the management of leg ulcers and pelvic floor disorders, improvements to the hospital’s pre-operative process to increase operational efficiency and an APN led preoperative assessment and education clinic.
Career thrust into the future
The scholarships will help these nurses jump to leadership roles once they complete their doctorates. With particular focus on evidence-based clinical practice, they will be able to
How will it be conducted? • 1.5 year on-line course • Scholars will travel to Duke University in the US for 3 face-to-face sessions. • The Duke faculty will travel to Singapore for one face-to-face session.
improve systems of care and become valuable mentors to new and existing APNs. Ms Sivagame Maniya, Senior Nurse Clinician, from SGH Vascular Surgery shares, “It allows nurses to specialise in every field. You can go into informatics, research or clinical management. Nursing is very broad. That should encourage young people to think about nursing in a different perspective and not just bed side nursing”.
Nursing now has their own public site on our SGH website under Clinical Specialties and Centres. Scan the QR code for immediate access.
Storage solutions at your fingertips
In healthcare, patient confidentiality is of the utmost importance. Can you imagine if your medical records were made public? How we store our work data determines how we are able to protect the data. What kind of data do you work with?
What's your favourite way to store work data? Medical records of patients, including HIV test results. Research data which we are planning to publish.
#USB flash #thumb drives #mobiles: losing these devices loaded with company or patient information can be disastrous. Once stolen, these are easily accessible by thieves. #external hard drive #laptop : same as above. Even password protected drives and laptops are easily bypassed by experts. #public email solutions like gmail: such email services generally have low security as most emails are sent as open text. Furthermore, mail and attachments can be stored anywhere in the world. #cloud storage: when storing sensitive data like patient data or personal information, you risk losing possession
USB flash or thumb drives. So easy to carry. My external hard drives or laptop. Everything is on it.
and control of the data if the vendor has technical or financial issues.
The right solutions:
The best way to store data is by using encrypted devices. You can contact the IT helpdesk for advice on proper usage of security features found in encrypted devices and the recommended types of encrypted devices. In addition, make sure you use anti-virus software to scan your devices before using. For the presentation on IT security, please go to the intranet, communications department /internal communications / grapevine / past presentations / 2013 October.
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
Awarded ASSOC PROF KOO WEN HSIN,
PROF FONG KOK YONG,
Group Director, Medical, SingHealth and CMB, SGH
ASSOC PROF TERRANCE CHUA,
Deputy Director, NCCS
Deputy Medical Director, NHCS
National Medical Excellence Awards: National Outstanding Clinician Educator Award
National Medical Excellence Awards: National Outstanding Clinician Award
ASSOC PROF TAN BIEN SOO,
Senior Consultant, Diagnostic Radiology, SGH
MS CHUA GEK PHIN,
Distinguished Fellow Award by the Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiological Society of Europe (CIRSE)
Director, Nursing, NCCS
The award confers international recognition of high quality of interventional radiology work.
Presidentâ€™s Award for Nurses
PROF WONG TIEN YIN,
MR KONG MING CHAI,
Group Director, Research, SingHealth and Senior Consultant, SNEC
Senior Principal Clinical Pharmacist Prof Lucy Wan Outstanding Pharmacist Award This is the highest honour accorded by the Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore to local pharmacists in Singapore.
Eisenhower Fellowship to USA Outstanding professionals from around the world are invited to the US for an intensive, individually designed program in their professional field.
Appointed A/PROF CHAN KWAI LIN DAISY
Head, Neonatal and Developmental Medicine, SGH
DR SEOW CHUEN CHAI DENNIS
Head, Geriatric Medicine, SGH
A/PROF CHUNG YAW FUI ALEXANDER
A/PROF GOH YEOW TEE
PROF TAN KOK HIAN
Head, Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary and Transplant Surgery, SGH
Director, Office of Translational Medicine Oversight, SGH This oversees the governance and regulation of translational projects.
Group Director, Academic Medicine, SingHealth, and Senior Associate Dean, Academic Medicine, Duke-NUS
Cross Culture “When I first arrived, I was struck by all the skyscrapers and how clean the streets are,” says Taslima Akter Swapna who hails from Bangladesh. The translator with SingHealth's Business Development Department added, “Singaporeans might be surprised to know we also share a love of celebrating different religious and cultural festivals.” “We celebrate Muslim festivals like Eid-Ul-Fitr (end of the fasting month), Durga Puja for the Hindus, Christmas for Christians and Purnima for the Buddhists. However Pahela Baishakh, our New Year's Day is the most colourful event in the country. On 14 April, the capital Dhaka comes alive with a pageant where paper made animals and masks feature prominently. Tournaments, boat races and fairs are held throughout the day. Singaporeans are naturally curious about our food. In Singapore, I like to go to Fakhruddin and Khana Bashmati at Mustafa centre. Here’s a common Bangladeshi dish.”
Chicken Korma (Serves 3 – 4)
INGREDIENTS: • 1 baby chicken (cut into 6 – 8 pieces) • 4 tbsp of onion paste • 1 tbsp ginger • 2 tsp of garam masala • ½ tsp of garlic • ½ tsp of salt • 1 tbsp sunflower oil • 1 bay leaf • ¼ tsp cinnamon • 1 medium sized onion (chopped) • 300 ml water • 1 cup milk • A few blended raisins or ¼ tsp of sugar • 4 green chillies METHOD:
1. Marinate the chicken with the onion paste, ginger, garlic, salt and garam masala powder for at least half an hour. 2. Heat the oil in a wok. Add the bay leaf, cinnamon and fry for a few minutes. Then add the chopped onion and fry until soft . 3. Add the chicken pieces and cook by adding the water little by little. We call this koshano. Cover the lid and cook on medium flame until the chicken is done and the gravy thickens. 4. Add milk and blended raisins or sugar to taste. Throw in the green chilies and cover the lid. Cook for 10 minutes on low heat. We call this keeping on Dom. 5. Serve with rice.
LIFE at SGH Campus | Sep/Oct 2013
Remember your old school days?
Jamie, please contact us to collect your $20 prize voucher.
“Having our cake and eating it too - best times with school friends.”
— JAMIE LAM, Operations
Executive, Allied Health Division
— KELLY WOH, Administrative Assistant, Nursing Administration
“Shoot ‘em up! We won the best Game Stall for our game Shoodaducky at the school carnival.”
— JENNIFER WEE, Acting “Mixing it up – helping out at an exchange programme with students from different schools coming together.”
— QUEK YING XIU,
Procurement Executive, SingHealth Group Procurement Office
NEXT: A FEW OF MY FAVOURITE THINGS Send us a picture of your favourite item(s) on your desk or at your work station. Tell us all about your most loved item and stand to win $20 voucher. Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Closing date: 30 November 2013.
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As Halloween creeps around, what was your biggest fear as a kid? “My aunt’s false teeth! She would threaten that if I did not do my colouring properly, she would remove her false teeth and place them on the table in front of me.” — NUR MAIZURA BINTE ABDUL, Nurse Clinician, Ward 46
“My father! He loved us very much but was very strict and fierce with his children.” — JAYA M K PILLAI, Therapy Assistant, Physiotherapy Department.
“As a kid, I was and still am terrified of life-sized dolls with huge, googly eyes that can roll back and forth- it’s like their eyes are the windows into your soul. After watching ‘Are you afraid of the Dark?’, I dreamt of being locked in a room with them. One carried a rose while crying softly to herself. No dolls for me please but Happy Halloween!” —R R PRAVIN, Year 3 Medical Student, Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine (NUS)
“I have always been scared of the dark and being alone. So whenever I’m home alone, I’ll switch on all the lights and the TV – to let the light and sound fill the house.” — MS RUBIYAH, Senior Staff Nurse, Infection Control Unit
“Cockroaches! Whenever my father caught a cockroach, he would clench it in his fist, and let it wriggle through his fingers, displaying this in front of my face.” — TONG WEI LING, Nurse Clinician, Ward 55B
“Beetles! My uncle would catch a beetle, and place it upside down on his hand to show me. The beetle on its back, legs twitching in the air, terrified me!” — TAN YIH SHAN, Staff Nurse, Ward 58