Support Site for The Unemployed & Underemployed
Thursday January 24th 2019

Email Interview With A Wheelchair-bound Reader Distressed Over Unpaid Hospitalisation Bills


I did an email interview with a wheelchair-bound reader distressed over his unpaid hospitalisation bills:

1. What is your current financial situation?

Currently¬†employed but ¬†after deduction of CPF I’m left with about $1200.¬†

I have maintenance fee of $280 to pay monthly.¬† On top of that, my ex-wife is now staying next room in my flat and she doesn’t pay utilities bill amounting to about $200 monthly.¬† Now into her ninth month, ¬†¬†she’s left ¬†with 3 more months‚Äô of stay in my flat as ordered by the Family Court.¬†

My home land-line phone bill/internet bill/mobile phone bill is about $150, plus household shopping bill is around $250 and newspaper expenses  about $50 (paying for mum/dad). 

MRT/bus fare is very expensive now and I’m paying double for myself/dad’s domestic helper ($30 x 2 monthly)

 a. How much savings do you have right now?

 I have practically no savings  at all, as I live from hand to mouth monthly

 b. How long have you being  in such a situation?

¬†For some time now that I cannot even recall…. Just sustaining as much as I can

 c. Are you in debts now? If so, how much?

 I have borrowed money from friends for unforeseen circumstances (like seeing doctor at polyclinic, travelling expenses by taxi incurred in going to court sessions previously) and till now outstanding about  $1000

 2. Family Situationa. How long have you being divorced?

 Been divorced since 02 Sep 2009

 b. Maintenance amount to be paid?

 As mentioned in No. 1, its $280 per month to be paid towards child maintenance.

 c. Why did you divorce?

 I did not wanted the divorce, but my ex-wife initiated divorce and forced me to go through the process, as she threatened that even if I do not want to divorce, she will still go ahead with it with or without my consent.

 d. Any other family members that you need to support?

 So far I could barely support myself,  so how to support my mum/dad?

 3. Welfare assistance a. Did you approach any CDC or other govt agency for welfare?

¬†I had wanted to approach CDC…but hit a snag after meeting the MP.¬† The promise made by the CC to assist also did not even materialise…and with all the paperwork/red tape procedures, I decided not to proceed ¬†to apply for welfare assistance. The whole process is simply ¬†too troublesome and bureaucratic.

 b. How much did you receive and for how long?


 c. How long will the welfare lasts for  you?


 4. Unemployment Situationa. How long were you jobless?

¬†I was unemployed for about 3 months, but now¬† found a apprenticeship scheme job. However, ¬†seeing that the company has no business for the last 2 months, I’m concerned that I will be laid off once again.

 b. What jobs are you looking at?

 I am looking at Customer Service support/Office Coordinator or I.T. support job

 c. Why is it that you are jobless for so long?

 As I am physically disabled (wheelchair-bound), finding a job with suitable facilities at the work place is a challenge itself  let alone travelling to work.

 d. Do you face any discrimination in your job search?

¬†In a way, yes…because of my physical disability… on top of that its also partly because I do lack paper qualifications…. But it does not necessarily mean that I’m not up to the mark of any ¬†job given.

 5. Any other things you want to tell us?

 Recently I was warded in hospital twice for urinary tract infection and fever. 

The first stay was in Alexandra hospital where I was told I could not use my elder sister’s Medisave (I have no Medisave or Medishield) to pay for the bill but I only can use my parents medisave ¬†as the ruling has changed.¬†

After discharge with the full course of antibiotics consumed, I has an  illness recurrence and  was warded into SGH this time. 

Subsequently more infection was detected and I was accorded the necessary treatment and am feeling ok now. However,   the hospital bill issue re-surfaced again.

I seeked help with the MSW there for fee waiver and also for interim assistance. The case is still pending.

¬†I also dare not do any follow-up check-up at the hospital because I have no money for that plus I am constantly struggling with my ¬†¬†daily expenses ‚Äď all this is ¬†taking an emotional toll on my fragile health.

I feel very depressed and desperate now.

I sincerely hope you can help me with this issue.


Timolty (name changed)


NB:  Timolty has asked for a contribution of $300 to pay for his medical bills at  the hospital. Interested readers can email me at for details on how to contribute РGilbert.

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One Response to “Email Interview With A Wheelchair-bound Reader Distressed Over Unpaid Hospitalisation Bills”

  1. sharky says:

    Coming from personal experience.

    Go to the CDC for aid assistance, even if you have to go through all the hassle of paperwork. Though, they don’t normally give assistance in cash, they can help you with Town Council service and conservancy charges and offer food vouchers. At least this would save you about $100 to $200 a month. Be persistent, but be patient.

    Also, seek MYCS’s help, not because they will help you, but they will push the responsibility to NGOs that help the unfortunate. Once you get the contact number of the NGOs from the MYCS, call them, and they can offer you some food necessities or vouchers. On top of that, the NGOs can offer you a listening ear.

    You may also, wish to contact Bizlink. It’s an NGO that helps the disabled find work or some income.

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