On a recent visit to Singapore, Esther Khor a Respiratory Therapist working with PROP, had the opportunity to explore how respiratory services are being delivered to the community in a different country.
She had been invited to visit the Adult Home Ventilation Program. Singapore is known as a metropolis with well established resources. Esther was looking forward to a discussion to compare and contrast technologies and client groups with her Singaporean peers. The hospital she visited was Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) where she met up with Dr. Chan Yeow and his team of professionals.
Upon entering TTSH, uniformed greeters kindly direct people to their destinations, leaving visitors immediately with an impression of warmth and friendliness the moment you arrive.
Cheng Hong, a Nurse Clinician Samiko spoke with, reported that TTSH’s Home Ventilation and Respiratory Support Service supports over 100 vent users in the community with home visits and clinic sessions every two weeks. The team consists of four nurses and Dr. Chan Yeow. Besides their work at the hospital, they are also able to conduct an impressive up to 500 home visits a year. PROP services approximately 550 clients in British Columbia each year and the model of service is predominantly client-directed.
On a positive note it was found that both Singaporean and Canadian programs are using the same Trilogy ventilator with success in the community.
Some differences :
- the costs for a client in Singapore are more difficult to manage, possibly because home visits from the family physician cost a lot of money
- most patients are allocated one bilevel machine or ventilator at TTSH while at PROP, an extra bilevel or ventilator will be added if the usage hours exceeded 12-14 hours.
However, overall one undeniable similarity between the staff of TTSH’s Home Ventilation program and PROP became very clear: everyone is very excited about the work they do and are constantly pushing the envelope for supporting independence in the community!