It’s going to be family docs first, says minister

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Datuk_Dr.S.SubramaniamMALACCA: The Government is set to revive the concept and role of the family physician as the “first line” of healthcare for the people.

Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said the approach would see patients being treated and diagnosed much earlier.

“This approach is to ensure that the people keep healthy by seeing their family physicians regularly and not when they are already seriously ill,” he told reporters after a two-day conference here yesterday with stakeholders on the ministry’s future direction over the next four years.

Dr Subramaniam said the decision to revive the concept was decided at the conference.

The Government, he said, would empower health clinics nationwide to realise the practice of family physicians.

“Higher allocations would be given to existing health clinics for them to be better equipped.

“Appropriate training on family medical healthcare will also be given soon for doctors and other staff,” he added.

Dr Subramaniam said the practice of having family physicians used to be the norm in the old days, where every member of a family were seen by a family doctor who was familiar with their medical history.

The ministry, he said, was also looking into a proper bridging mechanism to utilise all facilities available in the public and private healthcare system.