A Singaporean has claimed that a “power hungry” commanding officer (OC) instructed him to only visit the medical officer (MO) if his temperature is still high after drinking cold water and taking a cold shower, when the ex-full time National Serviceman (NSF) ran a high fever.
The ex-NSF made the claim after a medical doctor recently cautioned the Ministry of Defence in a forum letter that “our young and injured NSFs are not given the rest they require to recover.”
Revealing that he has encountered army personnel who do not give NSFs sufficient rest when they are genuinely ill, Redditor u/CheeeeezyCrust shared a personal story from his own NS days at Pulau Tekong.
Recounting that he shared with his superior that he was running a fever over 39 degrees celsius, the ex-NSF said that the OC butted in and allegedly gave him these instructions:
“use level our(level 1 commander’s) water dispenser to half full drink cold water then take temperature again. If still above 37.5, take a cold shower then take temperature again. If that doesn’t work, go see MO.”
The NSF wrote:
“PC and PS are NSFs too. Nearly all commanders I dealt with are actually humane. The brain dead ones are regulars especially the power hungry ones.
“Once I had a fever above 39 in tekong so I talked to my PC about it. Since my OC was near, she came and wondered what happen. I’ll never forget her stupid face when she said
“”use level our(level 1 commander’s) water dispenser to half full drink cold water then take temperature again. If still above 37.5, take a cold shower then take temperature again. If that doesn’t work, go see MO.”
“She then left and I told my PC shit doesn’t work like that. PC understands but couldn’t defy. So still went through everything before going MO no matter the temperature. Charlene, if you see this, fuck you and your climb through the ranks cuz you’re a really dumb officer and a shitty human”
In his recent forum letter, Dr Tan Soo Heong called on MINDEF and the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) to look into the cases of NSFs who are not given enough rest to recover.
Dr Tan noted that doctors may be violating the SMC’s Ethical Code and Ethical Guidelines by revoking medical leave and urged: “Errant commanders should be reported to Mindef and errant doctors should be reported to the SMC.”