Woman broke up with boyfriend. Stood on the railing in front of the Merlion and leaped into the Singapore River. Hero dived in to save her cutting himself in the process. Both hero and woman were taken to A&E. Cashier at the hospital counter insisted that the hero pay $90 for treatment. The hero, a certain Filip Lou from Australia, was shocked that he was asked to pay. Hey, come on this is Singapore nobody gets free medical treatment not even heros...
Blogger Singaporean Skeptic has some ideas why the hero wasn't Singaporean. Why were the Singaporeans only interested in taking photos(of the hero in his undies) instead of helping the woman? I was thinking maybe they were just Singaporeans who can't swim and had cameras with them at that time.
But the Singaporean Skeptic is really cynical about the whole episode....
Mr Lou should know that this is Singapore and that no good deed goes unpunished. We should forgive his selflessness as his common sense hasn't been affected/perverted by staying on this Island for a very long time. He wasn't taught this important lesson of just caring only for one's self.If only he experienced our National Service (or education system), he would have instinctively learnt to stand by the side and watch; like all those Singaporeans who took pictures of the incident to send to Stomp. If he did that, he wouldn't have lost his $90.Well this is Singapore and we are more forgiving towards foreigners (as opposed to locals who should know better). Most probably he will get his refund after enough people make enough noise.This post is dedicated to the Singaporean(or PR) behind the counter who was only doing her job and nothing more.
Straits Times Feb 17 2009
DUTCH Australian IT executive Filip Lou, 34, was in Singapore for a conference, but ended up saving a life.
He was with his friends and colleagues in front of the Esplanade on Sunday night when 'a European woman attempting suicide leapt off the railing in front of the Merlion' he said.
'I grabbed the life buoy and threw it in after her but she did not make any attempt to hold on. Not wanting to watch her drown, I passed my mobile and wallet to my friends, took off my clothes and jumped into the dark waters after her,' he told The Straits Times on Tuesday.
Mr Lou, who works for with ILOG, an IBM company in Sydney, said the woman was neither on drugs nor drunk.
'I think she said her name was Annika and that her boyfriend had just broken off their relationship. She said she had nothing else to live for. I tried to counsel her while floating in the cold dark waters until the rescue team arrived,' he said.
While trying to climb the steps onto the Esplanade, Mr Lou cut his feet and hands on the sharp stones. 'I was not aware that my feet were bleeding and leaving red footprints on the sidewalk. I was more concerned with people photographing me in my underwear,' he said, laughing.
Mr Lou and the woman he saved were both taken to the emergency room at the Singapore General Hospital (SGH).
'My wounds were cleaned, treated and bandaged; and I was given a tetanus injection. When I went to the front desk, I was told I had to pay $90,' he said. 'I understand that it was late and the woman behind the counter was doing her job. It was not up to her to waive the fees but I had just risked my life to save a stranger. Is this really standard policy? I was quite disappointed,' he added.
Despite having to pay the $90, Mr Lou said he would do it again if a life was at risk.
When approached, a spokesman for the hospital said it is unable to waive fees for medical treatment rendered. 'But if a patient has problems making payment, he can arrange for deferred payment,' she added, but declined to comment on the victim, citing patient confidentiality.