To step up the fight against cancer, the Singapore Cancer Society (SCS) will increase its Cancer Treatment Fund by S$10 million.
Since 2005, the fund has helped over 3,000 patients with treatment costs. Cancer patients are referred to SCS by their doctors or medical social workers from various restructured hospitals in Singapore. SCS will also open a new one-stop rehabilitation centre for cancer patients in September.
These plans were revealed by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on Friday evening (Jan 16) at a concert which marked the organisation’s efforts in supporting cancer patients over the last 50 years.
Speaking at the Hope 50 – Together as One event, Mr Lee said fighting cancer is not just about better medical science and healthier lifestyles, but also about community support.
Earlier in the evening, he met several cancer survivors. They shared with him how the support they had received from their families and the SCS had made a big difference to their confidence and medical outcomes.
Mr Lee said: “SCS is an example of the kind of civil society, the kind of get-together-and-do-something spirit, which we would like to see in Singapore. This is what we mean when we said that Singapore should be a democracy of deeds, because it does not matter who you are, what situation you are in.
“Whether you are a (cancer) survivor or a patient, or maybe a family member with a loved one struck by cancer or just someone who wants to make a difference to others – you come together, work together, you contribute what you have. It could be contributing your time, it could be contributing your skills, it could be just contributing your sympathy and your human understanding, a shoulder for somebody to lean on and to rest on.”
Lower-income patients can also apply for one-off financial aid under the SCS’s new Cancer Care Fund from January.