Health Ministry director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah explains

Are you aware that some 1Malaysia clinics are under- utilised?

Yes, but only a few out of the 258 out there. There are about 20% or less with an average of 30 patients a day. In some, this is expected as the clinics are located in areas with a small population but with no other health facilities in the vicinity.

Based on the norm, an assistant medical officer (AMO) would see 30 patients per day or an average of 10 minutes per patient. Hence, the expected average workload per clinic is 60 per day for a K1M run by two AMOs.

However, about 20% of the clinics register an average of 100 patients per day, and these will have a resident doctor. The total cumulative attendance for all K1M was 1.32mil patients in 2010, 1.98mil (2011), 2.72mil (2012) and 4.42mil (2013).

Are there plans to merge some of these clinics with Klinik Kesihatan?

K1M have always been under the jurisdiction of the Doctor in Charge of the nearest Klinik Kesihatan. He or she is responsible for providing supervision, monitoring and also the supply of staff, equipment or drugs. The “decentralisation” of the clinic space to K1M allows for better crowd management at the Klinik Kesihatan which generally are becoming too congested.

What are the challenges facing 1Malaysia clinics? 

There are no serious challenges as most of the issues raised are being attended to. Policies that are limiting are reviewed to ensure that the health needs of the local population and any logistics involving staff and the clinics are addressed and interventions taken.

From clinics that were only run by AMOs, the busier ones are now equipped with doctors. They started by only providing outpatient care for simple ailments, but now some K1M provide maternal and child health services to commensurate with the increase in demand for such services. K1M was meant mostly for the poorer urban population, however to ensure equity, rural villagers who are also deprived of health services and facilities are now being considered for K1M.

Are there plans to open more such clinics? 

K1M are generally popular due to their “fast” service and longer opening hours (12 hours). The population is more aware that for simple ailments, they can get treatment from K1M, and there is a shorter waiting time. More 1Malaysia clinics will be built if there is justification for them.

Related stories:

Public shy away from 1Malaysia clinics

AMOs and MAs are not learning much compared to being in a govenment hospital

Private primary healthcare providers want in

Health , Government , 1 Malaysia Clinic


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