SINGAPORE: A new National Skin Centre (NSC) scheduled to open in 2022 will house enhanced facilities and have its capacity boosted by 50 per cent, in order to meet the rising demand for dermatological services among Singaporeans.
In 2016, NSC saw an average of 1,000 patients a day, with 340,000 outpatient clinic attendances in the year – an increase of more than 20 per cent from 280,000 in 2007.
The new 10-storey building, which will be located at the NSC’s current Novena site, will have 69 consultation rooms, up from the current 46, it said in a press release on Wednesday (Apr 18).
The new building will house a Day Treatment Centre that will offer diagnostic, monitoring and treatment services in one location, making access to care by patients – especially the elderly – more convenient.
A Patient Education Centre will provide patients and caregivers with information and resources the management of skin conditions.
Training facilities, such as teaching laboratories and a medical library, will also be expanded.
The laboratories will facilitate studies on skin issues prevalent in Singapore and support the conduct of a wider range of clinical trials for new therapies for common skin conditions.
A Skin Physiology Clinic will support research on the development of new skin diagnostic techniques and conduct trials for new non-invasive skin diagnostic techniques.
The existing NSC building will be repurposed as the administrative headquarters of the National Healthcare Group.
Speaking at its groundbreaking ceremony on Wednesday, Senior Minister of State for Health Amy Khor said that NSC’s expansion is timely given the prevalence of skin conditions in Singapore.
For example, 20 per cent of Singaporean children and 11 per cent of adults suffer from eczema, she said.
“The demand for dermatology services will continue to increase in the coming years, especially with the ageing population,” Dr Khor said. “Skin conditions can greatly affect the quality of life for sufferers. But with appropriate treatment and care, many of these conditions can be managed and patients’ quality of life can be improved.”