One thing I really appreciate about living in Singapore is our world-class healthcare system. I’m not just talking about how well the sector managed during the Covid-19 pandemic. Citizens like me are fortunate to have healthcare professionals across various disciplines as well as wide-ranging facilities to address just about every health issue – from surgeons and physiotherapists to specialist clinics, rehabilitation centres, and imaging and radiology centres.


My general practitioner (GP) functions as my primary care provider, giving front-line advice on a host of different ailments and taking care of things like common medical complaints and immunisations. My GP is also the first one I go to for an initial diagnosis of a new health issue, like the running injury I sustained some months back.



What’s a medical specialist?

There will be times when your GP will suggest seeing a specialist. That’s usually when your health situation would benefit from expertise in a specific area of medicine, like urology (specialist in disorders of the urinary system), oncology (specialist in cancer treatment), gynaecology (specialist in the female reproductive system) and so on.


With healthcare becoming more complex and treatments getting more advanced, medical specialists have in-depth training and experience to treat your condition in the most effective way.


What should you consider when choosing one?

With so many complex factors involved, many different areas of medical speciality and so many doctors available, choosing a medical specialist can be mind-boggling. As with any purchase you make, a physician’s service also needs informed decision making. You can go with recommendations from family or friends, or even a specialist you just read about.

Rather than just take the first recommendation you get, there may be better ways to find a specialist who’s the right fit for you. Here are some factors to consider:

Convenience: A specialist with a clinic that’s conveniently located means you won’t have to worry about excessive travelling especially when you may have to make several follow-up visits.

Expertise: You may want to choose a specialist who’s particularly skilled in a certain new treatment.

Time in the field: Many people also consider the doctor’s years of experience for a certain degree of assurance.

Other factors: How long you’d have to wait for an appointment with the specialist, the fees they charge, and whether they’ll be able to perform any required surgery at your preferred hospital.


An easier way to choose a specialist


As choosing a specialist can be a daunting task, insurers like Singlife have an extensive panel of specialists that customers can use. If you’re a Singlife Shield policyholder, you can access the panel of specialist doctors under the IHH Healthcare Singapore network.  You can browse the list of more than 500 specialists available online and get an appointment within three working days.



Choosing a specialist from Singlife’s panel also means you’ll get an increased claim limit of up to S$2,000,000 per policy year*.



What happens after you’ve shortlisted a few specialists?


It’s time for some homework. Go online, research their credentials and read reviews from other patients. If you’re like me, you can also ask friends and relatives what they liked or disliked about specialists they’ve seen, then set your own expectations about the specialist that’s right for you.





For policyholders of Singlife Shield Plan 2, 3 and Standard Plan, please consider the coverage of your Singlife Shield plan type before consulting with the private specialists on our panel. Singlife Shield Plan 2, 3 and Standard Plan are not designed to cover medical expenses with private specialists, including those from our panel, hence your hospitalisation and surgical/treatment costs may not be claimable in full.


*Applicable for Singlife Shield Shield Plan 1 policyholders only.

Find out more about Singlife’s medical insurance plans today!

Singlife Medical Insurance Plans | Singlife Singapore Thumbnail Singlife Medical Insurance Plans | Singlife Singapore Thumbnail


The content of the blog – LifeStuff is published for general information only and does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation, and particular needs of any specific person. The objective of this blog is merely for educational purposes and is not intended to serve as legal, tax, investment or accounting advice and nothing contained here shall constitute a distribution, an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy. Accordingly, no warranty whatsoever is given, and no liability whatsoever will be accepted by Singapore Life Ltd for any loss arising whether directly or indirectly as a result from you acting based on this information.


You may wish to seek advice from a financial adviser representative before making a commitment to purchase the products. If you choose not to seek advice from a financial adviser representative, you should consider whether the product in question is suitable for you. The polices are protected under the Policy Owners’ Protection Scheme, and administered by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation (SDIC). For more information on the types of benefits that are covered under the scheme as well as the limits of coverage, where applicable, please contact us or visit the LIA or SDIC websites ( or