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To a question on immediate reporting by doctors to Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower (MOM) about work injuries, Minister Lim Swee Say made it clear that the responsibility to report work accidents lies with the employer.
He was responding to a question by MP Louis Ng Kok Kwang on whether the Ministry will consider making immediate reporting by doctors mandatory to MOM that require 24 or more hours of hospitalisation or when three or more days of medical leave is required.
The question came to light considering that the current system that relies on employers to report voluntarily may lead to the under-reporting of injuries.
Minister Lim pointed out that currently, incident reports can be submitted directly to MOM online or in person by injured employees, their dependents and representatives as well as doctors, if they are concerned that the employer may not report the accident.
“However, I would like to emphasise again that the primary responsibility to report accidents should rightfully rest with the employer,” he said.
Under the Workplace Safety and Health Act and Work Injury Compensation Act, it is mandatory for employers to report any work-related accident resulting in an employee’s death; or hospitalisation for at least 24 hours; or medical leave for more than three days.
It is an offence for employers not to notify MOM of the reportable accidents. Since 2014, seven employers have been taken to task by MOM for persistent late reporting of minor injuries after repeated reminders, or delayed reporting of a serious work injury.