Baby falling sick on Sundays – where to find pediatrician?
March 4, 2013

Parents hate it when kids fall sick over the weekend.. Coz most clinics are closed and I always thought the only place open on Sunday and specializes in kids is KK Hospital’s children emergency. It’s always a dilemma, to wait until Monday to see the doctor, or to bring them to KKH. Sometimes the illness doesn’t seem too serious to warrant a visit to children’s emergency, but yet it’s serious enough to keep us worrying all weekend if we don’t seek any medical attention.

MY, who is 7 weeks old, started coughing in his sleep on Saturday night. I could hear phlegm in his cough and got pretty worried. I wanted to bring him to see a pediatrician, so I searched the Internet and found out that Thomson Pediatric Centre at TMC is open on Sunday from 9am to 12noon.

We arrived at the clinic at 10.30am – it was extremely crowded! Be prepared for a 3-hour wait if you are here on a Sunday! There were toys to keep MF entertained while waiting, but not for that long, so hubby brought MF out to run some errands while I waited there alone with MY. There is a diaper-changing table in the clinic which is pretty convenient.. But there was no nursing room! So when MY had to nurse, I brought him to the nursing room at the other end of the building – that was quite a hassle.

We finally saw the doctor, Dr Ang Ai Tin, at about 1.30pm. MY was nebulized, did a suction of his mucus (which was sent to the laboratory for testing) and we were sent home with a nose drop and a cough medicine. We were supposed to go back 3 days later for review when the lab test result is out.

However that night, MY started coughing worse and he kept puking whatever milk or medication we tried to give him, together with thick yellowish phlegm. We got very worried and were in a dilemma again – should we bring him to TMC 24-hour clinic (which is a family clinic, not a pediatric clinic) or to KKH? We decided to go TMC in the end since his mucus test was done there and hopefully we can get Dr Ang to follow up.

At the 24-hour clinic, we told the doctor that we had seen Dr Ang earlier in the morning, and he called her up to explain MY’s symptoms and get instructions from her. MY was warded to be nebulized / suctioned and for observation plus further tests like blood test and chest x-ray. He managed to sleep well throughout the night and take one feed without puking. 🙂

(Nebulized and hating it.)

(MY sleeping soundly on my bed instead of the cot provided.)

So it turns out, KKH is not the only place we can go when our kids fall sick on a Sunday. If you know of any other pediatric clinics that open on Sundays, do let me know! 🙂


  • Jude says:

    Hi, happen to pass by your blog, useful info! Just want to give you a word of caution on Dr Ang Ai Tin. My baby was recently for 2 conditions at TMC too under Dr. Ang. While she has cleared my baby’s phlegm or bronchitis, she made a wrong diagnosis on my baby’s 2nd condition ~ a tricky constipation which she insisted was diarrhoea. So during 3 days stay, baby was fed diarrhoea medicine and given neb and to cure the bad state of bum. baby was well and discharged on 4th day. However, the bowel staining and tummy cram returns with this time more frequent. We went back for a follow up checkup with Dr. Ang and she said baby is well, she wouldn’t worry about the bowel stain. What’s horrifying is when she said she wouldn’t feed baby Smecta and Loperamide which she prescribed and diverted to saying that baby has eczema and a very sensitive baby before sending us away and that we should continue on lactose free milk. We were like so?? How can baby be well when she is reacting abnormally frequently.
    On the same day, we brought baby to KKH and had similar diagnosis from Dr. Junior and we were given more Smecta. We were also told that there’s nothing wrong with her but How can it be when she’s crying with strain every half hour! So, that night, googled for more specialised pediatrician and finally decided on one after studying through the night for the right doctor. I’m glad to make the right decision and true enough, baby has constipation and days of feeding her diarrhoea medicine has harden her stool into a rock. So, my point is, please be careful with this doc. who may prescribe strong medicine.. well at least in my case. The bronchitis returns 3 weeks later. We did away with neb prescription this time and went for TCM and it seems to work better.

  • okxygene says:

    hey bumblebeemum, stumbled across ur blog jus as I m researching on bringing my 11mth old to Korea next month. thank u for the info!

    just to share, if u r looking for peadiactrician, The children’s medical center at Bishan operates till noon on Sunday. Both doctors at the clinic are pretty good and the charges reasonable. Had also been through those episodes where I was scrambling for a working PD on weekends instead of gg straight to KKH.:)

  • Wendy says:

    Hi, just stumbled upon ur post on Dr Ang. Just want to share that I had a bad experience with her as well. She tends to exaggerate baby’s condition and insisted on warding baby. Always do unnecessary tests on baby and exaggerated condition without explaining further no matter how I prompted. I got so upset that I requested all hard copies of test reports and consulted my own PD, Dr Lilian Lim at The Kids Clinic. She gave me a free consultation and explained all the tests report to me and assured that’s baby will be fine after medication. Reason why I visited Dr Ang was somewhat like u, I wasn’t sure where to get PD on Sunday. In fact, I went to the 24-hr clinic at TMC, and it was the registration nurse who referred me to Dr Ang’s clinic.

    Anyway, just to share that we can always go to TMC 24-hr clinic and consult the in house Medical Officer, and if need, we just let them know who is our child’s PD and they will contact our PD to attend to our child should they be warded.

    • Send says:

      Hi, I brought my child in to see dr tang ai tin due to a prolonged fever and i agree that she tends to over exaggerate and order tests unnecessarily. I too went to see her on a Sunday to avoid taxing our public hospital.

      First red flag was her counter staff asked me to send my child (below 1 yrs old) for a blood test before we even saw Dr Tang. How is it that anyone other than a doctor can order a blood test? I declined because a doctor shld see the patient to make an assessment first to decide if a blood test is necessary, and if any additional tests will be required from the blood to avoid repeated blood taking.

      Second red flag was that I happened to choose a sit right outside her office, and while I sat there for more than an hr, almost every patient was asked to be given a blood test and or a chest X-ray.

      When I finally got around to seeing her, she chided me for not wanting a blood test because “my dear your son has been having a fever for ten days, you need to find out what is going on!” So off to a blood test we go. When we return, she made a diagnosis based on blood work alone by observing different levels of white blood cells, and her diagnosis was that my son most likely had an autoimmune disease and kept saying “kawasakis” and asked us to go back home and take ibuprofen every 6 hours because he has an “inflammatory fever” (also a “diagnosis” she repeats several times) and come back in 3-4 days if it doesn’t improve so that my baby can take another blood test to confirm it.

      Herein comes the Third Red flag – kawasakis is a very serious disease that often presents itself in swelling hands and feet and redness of the lips – which he did not have. She did not check his body for rashes, or take a urine test to rule out a urinay tract infection. At that point my son was having a fever for the tenth day.

      What she didn’t know was that I wasn’t just a mom, but also someone who is working in the biosciences industry. I don’t have a PhD but I have a B.Sc in Biology and I happen to work with Dr immunologists that specialize in understanding these kind of immune diseases. First thing is – what she does is lazy. She doesn’t assess the patient but look at numbers in the blood work which only gives u clues at what to look at, but should not be the basis of a diagnosis. I guess it must be her standard operating procedure of her staff was sending me to the blood test room before I even saw Dr Ang. secondly, all fever is caused by inflammation. i couldn’t believe she actually told me very confidently “he has an INFLAMMATORY FEVER!” The way someone says “you’ve got the flu!” And repeated it several times again when I asked her to explain.

      Now, if I were a parent that didn’t know enough to recognize these Red Flags…I would’ve just gone home for 3-4 days and come back again for no reason and my child would have been suffering-or worst.

      So I stared at her in disbelief, gave up and paid my $180 bill at TMC and went to KKH ! At kkh I found out that the tmc clinic stuck a print out label on my child’s health booklet blocking my handwritten information on the front page – and the label had the wrong Ic number and birth date. Next, the doctor was shocked that with suspicion of Kawasakis she sent me home because day ten is a critical day to treat kawasakis disease. If she had a suspicion that it was Kawasakis ( this disease can be fatal) , she should have done more immediately. In the end my son was warded for a few days and eventually diagnosed with pneumonia – something which Dr Angs blood work ruled out.

      Now, above is my own testimonial which I have rather painfully recounted. I will leave you parents to consider who to bring your child to see, but if it is so serious that there’s a need for medical attention on a weekend, just go to KKH. I have read that she is “very cautious” and “very caring”. I must have met her on a bad day.

      • bumblebeemum says:

        Thank you for taking your time to recount your experience. It does sound pretty shocking to make a diagnosis of kawasaki just based on blood test which is such a serious illness. So far my experience with her has been pleasant, she managed to catch MRSA and mycoplasma on 2 separate occasions for my boy and treated them with the correct antibiotics. I think if I were told my kid has kawasaki, I would freak out and rush to KKH for reconfirmation.

  • Dee says:

    Just sharing . I usually go for chinese traditional practice medicine for cure to flu , high fever , constipation etc . ( I am a regular to sheng hua chinese medical clinic at 64 syed alwi road , run by a 40yrs experienced chinese physician Mdm Teo YC, ) . My son 2 to 2.5 yr old just need to drink 3 to 4 times and he will recover . Most Western children medicine which are heavily mixed with sleeping dozing med , makes them tried n sleepy throughout the whole day . Chinese medicine doesn’t do that , my boy can run and play while taking his chinese medicine to treat his 39 fever.
    Chinese medicine is another good way of treating children illness , and they doesn’t mean they r less effective compare to western medicine . If you like to try chinese medicine to treat your kids illness , it’s best to visit experienced n old chinese physician . I don’t take chances on young Chinese physician .

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