Most people understand the importance and benefits of health screening, yet many still choose not to undergo one. Why is this so? We bust five common reasons people give for not getting screened.

1. “I am healthy, so health screening is not necessary.”

Even if you think you are healthy, it is still a good habit to get screened regularly. Common health problems such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and cancer often strike silently and without notice. Left uncontrolled, they can turn into more serious complications. Many people are unaware that they may have such conditions. By getting screened, you can detect such diseases early and get them under control, reducing your chances of complications occurring.

2. “Going for health screening is a hassle.”

If you have a busy schedule, health screening can bring about some inconvenience. In addition, for certain blood tests, prior preparation such as fasting from food is required the night before your appointment. But, more health screening providers are recognising this, and have come up with ways to reduce the inconvenience. Certain healthcare providers let you have the option of selecting your health screening online first, which allows you to reduce the time spent in the clinic during your appointment. You can also choose to get screened in the morning to free up your time for the rest of the day. To enhance your health screening experience, some providers offer food and snacks to curb your hunger pangs after fasting.

3. “My company already provides free health screening for me.”

While some companies offer health screenings as part of their employee wellness programme, the screenings may only include basic tests, such as blood pressure, BMI or blood glucose. These may not be enough. Ideally, you should get screened based on your age, gender, as well as personal and family medical history. If you find that certain tests you should be screened for are not included in your company’s health screening, consider adding on additional tests (if the options are available), or choose a health screening package from an external provider that contains the tests you need.

4. “I‘ve done my health screening a few years ago, why must I do it again?"

Remember going for your performance appraisal at work and getting graded for it? Health screening tests and their results are similar – they serve as a “report card” for your health. Each test tells you various aspects of your health – the areas you are doing great in, and the problem areas that you need to address. Like annual performance appraisals, health screenings should not be a one-off activity. Since each health screening evaluates your health at the time of screening, you should continue to get screened regularly so you can monitor for any changes in your health and take corrective action if needed.

5. “Health screening is expensive.”

Some insurance plans can cover the cost of health screening packages. If you are insured, check if your plan entitles you to a regular health screening. Otherwise, the Ministry of Health's Screen for Life programme offers eligible Singaporeans basic health screening and a follow-up consultation (if required) at subsidised rates. If you’re still hesitating about getting screened, here’s something for you to think about: a health screening package may set you back a few dollars and a bit of your time, but enjoying good health? Priceless.
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