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Thread: What a turn-off!

  1. #101

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Public healthcare is a often viewed as a benefit to the society. However, running the operation is not a cheap business since most technologies and drugs are bought overseas. The expertise & the assets gotta to be paid somehow and it just snowballs into a big fat sum. Not forgetting, the icing on top of the bill is our local sales tax (Is payment for healthcare a sales transaction)?

    I lived in a few western & asian countries before and do find the cost of healthcare here in singapore reasonable in relative terms.

    The only part which is not well taken care of is payouts from the insurance for medical claims.

    Just to illustrate an example. I was chatting with a physio therapist afew days back - a young sweet lady in her twenties which i hope to do her tfcd LOL - who said she got paid too little for a professional job. In Australia, a physio is a well paid professional job and the better qualified ones can even issue mc and drugs like steriods. But she claimed she was paid low since the market sets the standard for pricing (and hence her pay). The only part she blamed was that insurance companies in singapore are not (allowed) able to take care of the medical bills as well as the western countries. True enough, when i was overseas, i paid a premium for healthcare, but when i needed to claim, it wasn't too difficult to have them mostly paid off (except for special circumstances like pre-existing conditions). When i was a student, it was totally free since the premiums are factored into the tuition fees.

    The point here is, you can enjoy cheaper healthcare, but at the expense of higher insurance primiums and mark ups from other avenues (eg cpf, taxes, erp, fines) to cover for the welfare. It can be a net net effect afterall.

    As for healthcare standards, it is very acceptable here. Yes, the admin people may not do a good job filtering the patients in the A&E dept, but remember they are not doctors and are not certified to judge the degree of danger or complexity of the illness(es) of each A&E patient that walks though the auto door.

    Most often, i stayed on the line and waited patiently like the rest would in the queue. Sometimes, I get to jump queue when i needed to at the A&E. To illustrate, on two occassions, i brought a staff who suffered serious injuries. We applied first aid and sent him off to A&E. Took a cab and reached hospital in a jiffy. Joined the queue and paid the $80. When I was told to wait 3hrs hours at least, I lifted the poor chap's hand, showed the admin the blood soiled bandage and quietly told her he was loosing way too much blood earlier. She got the msg and hence quietly gave my staff a priority status to quickly see the doc and proceed to the small operating theatre. The admin people are not that heartless afterall.

    Indeed there are many horror stories in this trade and some mistakes relate to human errors. Eg. my close relative who once stayed in one of the top 2 private hospitals here did not have her oxygen supply turned on for 24hrs. There were 9 specialists and 6 nurses who attended her and none knew the oxygen wasn't switched on. The critically ill patient was having a hard time breathing with the face mask on. Also, the medications which one particular Indian nurse signed out were not administered to the patient for the whole day. The drugs were either stolen or thrown away out of convenience. I happened to know the GM of the hospital group and kicked a big fuss with a top down approach. I was involved in several meetings at director level after that. At the end of the patient's stay (after some months), my family paid - in full - every penny for all the bills which amounted to several hundred k. We were no beggars, but we just wanted a fair and honest amount of treatment that each patient should get from the nurses and staff.

    Does that imply that private hospitals are crappy? No, just human errors.

    My thoughts now are: I hope i can live happily and when its time for critical illnesses, just call me home. The torment to go thru those man-made-drugs and treatments might not be so rosy afterall.
    Last edited by contaxable; 31st October 2006 at 01:15 AM.

  2. #102
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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by dDarkroom View Post
    wait till you are referred to a medical social worker whose job is to protect the medical funds than to hear your request.

    I guessed they might even get promotion for safeguarding the funds.
    Not entirely true.. they are after all just trying to earn a living. They have to tell the difference between the genuine cases and the fakers. Hosipitals is the last place any social worker would like to be posted to.
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  3. #103
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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by sehsuan View Post

    Please draw a clear line between Medifund and "medical funds". Are you talking about the same thing?

    I can't help but get an impression that some people want heavy government subsidies and the top notch service in private hospitals, but aren't willing to pay for medical services. It's like what we read in the forums so often - pay peanuts, get monkeys.
    Govt subsidies doesnt mean the doc are being paid peanuts to do their job. Govt do PAY the hospitals. As doc, they should have the moral ethics to do their best for each and every patient. Even if they are paid less than those in the private sector. As a doctor, they should be more sensitive to ppl's feelings under such circumstances.

    Maybe to some of the docs there, they do not feel the need to commit themselves to the highest level of service and attention to their patients becuz they are being lesser paid and also becuz these patients are mainly from the low income section of society.

    To the low income and lesser education group, they would just accept whatever crap that are being threw at their faces. They will just shrug, accept their fate as it is and won't even dare to raise their unhappiness against the lousy treatment.
    Unlike against the higher income and better educated group who complain and seek legal compensation for any poor service.

    Some unethical docs treat their current govt job as some sort of confinement period before being eligible to move on to better paid opportunities in the private sector and treat patients shabbily.

    Maybe some of this doctors consider themselves as elites and do not see a point to serve the poor and needy the same level as the higher income group.

    I do not want to start a flaming war with u but I m shocked to see this sort of unfeeling comments coming out from a fellow Singaporean.

    Maybe one day u realise why ppl need heavy gov subsidies. And having heavy gov subsidies doesnt mean u just need to pay only 100+ per treatment.

    To some, ignorance is a bliss.
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  4. #104
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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by ortega View Post
    so it has become a business, out to make more money
    You try and find TTSH. The official name is Tan Tock Seng Hospital Private Limited.

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Yes it is FREE. you walk in and you don't have to pay a single cent but only if you're an australian. Not sure if it applies to PR. Education is free too. Not a single cent from their citizens for studies.



    you know better than to post "I heard" statements since you always seem to have a sharp tongue. Please do tell us the source.

    Yes it is in mine too. Free is FOC.



    Ref your first statement.
    Note that doctors and medical supplies are different entities. What are you talking about?

    Does it makes things easy? I know collecting premiums from you is darn easy. But collecting pay outs seem to be the other way round.


    What funds?

    The problem is that there's so many accounts lumped into 1 general term called CPF. Nobody knows what goes where and in times of dire situation, nobody (less you maybe) will have the time to confirm what they are being told by the hospital staff is accurate or not.



    Why bring topic of insurance into gov't subsidy? Please ref your 1st statment again. Note that subsidy and insurance are different entities. What are you talking about? The thing with insurance cover is that it will only cover you for a short period of time with their staggered payment or for some, a lump sum payment. After the payment dries up, the medical bills will still kill you. Insurance isn't a miracle pill. It is a form of self subsidy at the mercy of the insurance companies, do note that most (if not all) medical insurance premiums are non-guaranteed, meaning they can up the premiums anytime they deem fit or drop the coverage amount, all with just a 30 day notice. Great system huh?


    So in order for good service we have to pay high price for it? Does it mean that if I paid less to visit a polyclinic I deserved to be called names and be treated like sh!t? Service is a personal thing. It is the culture that the organisation inculcate into their staff.
    If you will to read the long post again, both Oncologist at the RH and Mt E costs $80 but the service level is different.

    So if your point below stands..
    I don't see how anyone can wait 6 weeks for treatment to begin. The agony one has to bear for 6 weeks? Don't think any flight will take 6 weeks. The only problem is $. Catch-22, suk thumb and back to waiting 6 weeks cos commoners can't afford to fly out as and when we like.

    I sure hope that you are heavily insured for good and top notch medical services in singapore as I'm not sure you are ready to see the "heavily subisdised" medical services in RHs. Hopefully you and all of us never have to use the medical services.

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  6. #106

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by Static View Post
    Govt subsidies doesnt mean the doc are being paid peanuts to do their job. Govt do PAY the hospitals. As doc, they should have the moral ethics to do their best for each and every patient. Even if they are paid less than those in the private sector. As a doctor, they should be more sensitive to ppl's feelings under such circumstances.

    Maybe to some of the docs there, they do not feel the need to commit themselves to the highest level of service and attention to their patients becuz they are being lesser paid and also becuz these patients are mainly from the low income section of society.

    To the low income and lesser education group, they would just accept whatever crap that are being threw at their faces. They will just shrug, accept their fate as it is and won't even dare to raise their unhappiness against the lousy treatment.
    Unlike against the higher income and better educated group who complain and seek legal compensation for any poor service.

    Some unethical docs treat their current govt job as some sort of confinement period before being eligible to move on to better paid opportunities in the private sector and treat patients shabbily.
    It is true there are unethical doctors in the healthcare industry - whether private or govt. But they all have the fundamental mission to save lives. If they don't do it with their heart, they bring bad karma to their own destiny.

    I had came across a renowned lung specialist (in private practice) playing a fool with a patient, asking a heart specialist to check the patient's lung on his behalf. They were standing side by side in front of the patient, laughing at each other's actions. i happened to be quietly seated beside the patient (who was very dear to me) and the two doctors thought i was nobody. Then the doc asked me some questions which proved he was not serious in his job. He had no idea what caused the patient's problem until i shared with him what a 25yr old therapist told me earlier. Also, he issued about to expire drugs (60 days left) which were supposed to be used for a period of 6mths. I found out he was that truelly unethical and, until today, many trusted him for who he is and paid him unmatchable high fees.

    So does paying more = better ethics? Not really true.

    Cheers to good health anyway.
    Last edited by contaxable; 31st October 2006 at 01:56 AM.

  7. #107

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    'liang xin' ? how much is one gram???? and how much is enough then is enough??? i believe there is always a reason for being not enough.....

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoky View Post
    Errr... I did mention that you can use CPF for HDBs... that's the only advantage.. As for retirement, how much can you get back after you retire or rather would it be enough for retirement... say at the age of 62 with the 120k minimum sum set inside?
    Remembering that the idea of the government is to ensure meritocracy, each person is responsible for his/her own survival. I didn't realize how badly I was lacking until I moved from teaching into the financial services sector. 120K divided by let's say 20 years (suppose I stop working for money at age 62, live up to 82) means I have only 6K a year. Divided up, that's only $500 a month, not factoring in inflation over that long span of time. 120K isn't going to be enough to cut it. Annuities will ensure that there will be a base amount that will last for life, but the amount per month issued will be lesser than CPF payouts. Unfortunately, the CPF payout method will end when a person outlives his/her savings. After that, the person has to get money from their offspring and next generation. Have these been catered for already?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hoky View Post
    As for Medisave, you are allowed to use a certain percentage of it, not all. What if you don't have enuf $$$ to pay the remaining.
    I guess we don't see the same light as perhaps you have not experience such painful plights / encounters.
    I haven't seen anything drastic in my family, I've been blessed. But let's remember that Medisave was intended to last us through our lives for drastic hospitalization related payments. There is a maximum limit you can have in it - and it was $33K as of July 1st 2006. It would be revised to be higher, to scale it for inflation etc long term. Even by basic MediShield, you're limited to $400 bucks a day, subject to daily limits and itemized sublimits. At $400 max a day for a month of 30 days for MediShield, that's already a hefty $12K per month of claims. How many people have that spare cash hanging around? There is a reason why insurance companies have been allowed to practice PMIS - Private Medical Insurance Scheme. Up till now, only 5 companies have been allowed to do it - AIA, NTUC, Aviva, GE and Prudential.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Yes it is FREE. you walk in and you don't have to pay a single cent but only if you're an australian. Not sure if it applies to PR. Education is free too. Not a single cent from their citizens for studies.
    Are you sharing that information as an Australian PR or citizen yourself? I can check with Australian expatriates locally to clarify our different understandings.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    you know better than to post "I heard" statements since you always seem to have a sharp tongue. Please do tell us the source.
    From a colleague in my current line of work. I haven't established if that's the truth, so I'm asking for someone to verify if it's just totally hearsay or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Ref your first statement.
    Note that doctors and medical supplies are different entities. What are you talking about?
    Both of these still need money. Money needs to be paid for medical supplies, doctors need money to survive - at least a token amount. Who is the money for both coming from?

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Does it makes things easy? I know collecting premiums from you is darn easy. But collecting pay outs seem to be the other way round.
    Have you actually had a good servicing agent in the first place who didn't misrepresent your medical insurance scheme?

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    What funds?
    Medifund.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    The problem is that there's so many accounts lumped into 1 general term called CPF. Nobody knows what goes where and in times of dire situation, nobody (less you maybe) will have the time to confirm what they are being told by the hospital staff is accurate or not.
    Are THREE accounts too much for people who can understand focal length, aperture, ISO, shutter, SLR and how to trip a shutter? Photography is even more complex than CPF in its right. "Nobody knows what goes where"? But I do! With a good FSC, you'll be able to plan for unforeseen contingencies and not be a burden to loved ones.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Why bring topic of insurance into gov't subsidy? Please ref your 1st statment again. Note that subsidy and insurance are different entities. What are you talking about? The thing with insurance cover is that it will only cover you for a short period of time with their staggered payment or for some, a lump sum payment. After the payment dries up, the medical bills will still kill you. Insurance isn't a miracle pill. It is a form of self subsidy at the mercy of the insurance companies, do note that most (if not all) medical insurance premiums are non-guaranteed, meaning they can up the premiums anytime they deem fit or drop the coverage amount, all with just a 30 day notice. Great system huh?
    The link is that in a meritocracy society, a person can't rely on a non-existent welfare system to pay for bills, because a nation of overgrown infants will collapse the entire nation by internal debt alone. Why insurance, is because it is a disciplined way of setting aside money for that unforeseen rainy day, which no-one has a chance of knowing when it will come, and in what form. Please note that PMIS and insurance payouts in the form of Death, TPD and Critical Illnesses, are all separate. A person who is admitted into hospital for example cancer, can claim from his/her policy a payout for Critical Illness if he/she has contracted the illness as defined by the insurer, which is pretty standard since all major insurers are all members of the Life Insurance Association (www.lia.org.sg). In other words, a person who contracted cancer can have a lump sum for immediate treatment, and a much reduced medical bill to pay for hospitalization etc. With Hospital Income insurance, there will be a small amount of cash a person will receive for each day housed up in a hospital. It may not seem much, but a month of say, $250 x 30 days => $7.5K. Better than zero.

    If in the first place a person doesn't want to put aside money for later use, he would probably say the same things as you did. Note that as late as three centuries ago, people were lucky if they lived to 60 years old. What else apart from hygiene allowed humans to live to 75+ these days? If it isn't medical advancement (of which a person can opt out from, save money and just die), I don't know what it is. I would be happy to explain to you in person how all these things function, but you should check first with your own FSC to see what can be done. That's why we're called, FINANCIAL SERVICES consultant. It's not an empty misnomer/moniker, depending on how you see it.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    So in order for good service we have to pay high price for it? Does it mean that if I paid less to visit a polyclinic I deserved to be called names and be treated like sh!t? Service is a personal thing. It is the culture that the organisation inculcate into their staff. If you will to read the long post again, both Oncologist at the RH and Mt E costs $80 but the service level is different.
    That is a problem with the medical institution, you'd have to settle the score with them.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    So if your point below stands..
    I don't see how anyone can wait 6 weeks for treatment to begin. The agony one has to bear for 6 weeks? Don't think any flight will take 6 weeks. The only problem is $. Catch-22, suk thumb and back to waiting 6 weeks cos commoners can't afford to fly out as and when we like.
    That suggestion was for those who are saying the entire medical system locally is poop. If a person hasn't had the virtue/habit of setting aside cash for a rainy day... then too bad. Then again, how many of us has a cash savings of say, $100K for medical treatment, at any one point of time? Should you have that cash amount, would you want to splurge it one shot, run out of money and end up using even more than that? That debt incurred would have to be paid for by the family - someone's gotta pay for it.

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    I sure hope that you are heavily insured for good and top notch medical services in singapore as I'm not sure you are ready to see the "heavily subisdised" medical services in RHs. Hopefully you and all of us never have to use the medical services.
    Indeed. To prevent ourselves from going into hospitals, it is best that we take care of ourselves and our bodies - the most priceless gift of all. Not just photography.

    Contaxable, your post was insightful. Thank you for sharing. What was the outcome of your close relative?

    I would like to sum things off this way - if a person doesn't want to put aside money for his/her own future - the person may not have a pleasant future of being around with his/her grandchildren for long. It's a personal choice.

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by Static View Post
    Govt subsidies doesnt mean the doc are being paid peanuts to do their job. Govt do PAY the hospitals. As doc, they should have the moral ethics to do their best for each and every patient. Even if they are paid less than those in the private sector. As a doctor, they should be more sensitive to ppl's feelings under such circumstances.

    *snip*
    I do believe Contaxable has answered your post well enough, I need not elaborate more. If you had a large sum of money set aside, and are able to afford it, you can pay for the BEST medical treatments, and the BEST of everything. Question is, how much have you set aside in cash otherwise for this purpose?

    The issue you're stating is about the people who run the on-the-ground medical services, no-one's stopping you from reaching their superiors and giving them constructive feedback. I can't help you with the issues you have with them, but I sure can only assist my own clients with their claims.

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    pay more or die waiting (waiting to die)

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    when i visited my sis in switzerland, i went w her to see a doctor, she just need to show a card. she not even working, only husband working( he is swiss) and every medical expenses is convered, including my niece's emdical fees too. but again, their taxes are high.

    use your medishield money to buy all kinds of medical insurance....then when you sick also don have to pay. that little medishield is only enough for insurance, if use it to pay bills will die

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by sehsuan View Post
    I can't help you with the issues you have with them, but I sure can only assist my own clients with their claims.
    I was starting to wonder why were your statements so heavily accented with insurance and financial planning. This actually clears all doubt. Thanks!

    Yes I do have a good financial planner and insurance agent and am coverd somewhat but I don't take the effort to memorise what the 3 accounts in my CPF does because I don't have to take those terms out everyday to study and sell some ideas to others based on them.

    We're both in different trades and I don't find designing a micro-computing platforms that hard either. What's so hard with just 1's and 0's compared to the 3 accounts in my CPF and Aperture/Shutter/ISO.
    “How fortunate for leaders that men do not think.” - Adolf Hitler

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by surge View Post
    when i visited my sis in switzerland, i went w her to see a doctor, she just need to show a card. she not even working, only husband working( he is swiss) and every medical expenses is convered, including my niece's emdical fees too. but again, their taxes are high.

    use your medishield money to buy all kinds of medical insurance....then when you sick also don have to pay. that little medishield is only enough for insurance, if use it to pay bills will die
    It's wrong to think you don't have to pay. The government imposed a co-payment rule that states that you MUST pay part of the medical bill even if your pay out is more than sufficient to cover the entire bill.

    sehsuan will have the perfect medishield rider for just a couple of dollars deducted from your medisave and get increased coverage. Buy early and young to reduce cost. It gets costlier as you grow older.

    fyi, i get 0 commision for this post and you might want to ask your sis to show the prove to him. I think he is finding it a bit hard to believe that some places provide free medical services.
    Last edited by yanyewkay; 31st October 2006 at 10:32 AM.
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  14. #114

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    sehsuan, please don't sell your product here. you jolly well go to the golf club and meet your high flyer clients that can afford original lens and local warranty cam.

  15. #115

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by yanyewkay View Post
    Not entirely true.. they are after all just trying to earn a living. They have to tell the difference between the genuine cases and the fakers. Hosipitals is the last place any social worker would like to be posted to.
    have you been refferred to one. have you gone through the process

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by dDarkroom View Post
    sehsuan, please don't sell your product here. you jolly well go to the golf club and meet your high flyer clients that can afford original lens and local warranty cam.
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  17. #117

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by dDarkroom View Post
    sehsuan, please don't sell your product here. you jolly well go to the golf club and meet your high flyer clients that can afford original lens and local warranty cam.
    No sales soliciting here....
    Post your ad. at Services Offered / Wanted pls...

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    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by dDarkroom View Post
    have you been refferred to one. have you gone through the process
    my friend works as one and like the sergeants in army, they are caught in between the hospital management and patients.

    She became a social worker with the heart and true intentions to help ppl, the world was rosy and she thought she could touch and change ppl's lives but circumstances are such that their hands are tied. sad.. she is now the devil turning down reqeusts instead of the angel she set out to be.
    “How fortunate for leaders that men do not think.” - Adolf Hitler

  19. #119

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Coming back to the original statement, I don't really see what is wrong with it. It just means everyone will be entitled to some level of medical care. Yes, ideally everyone should be entitled to the best medical care regardless of cost, but that's not going to happen, unless you want to pay for that person?

    I don't expect my children to take care of me when I'm old, and I certainly don't expect the government to do that. I'm glad enough that I have food on the table everyday, a roof over my head, can walk in the streets without fear of getting mugged and can sleep in peace during the night without thinking that my place will get looted in an overnight riot. If we feel so strongly for such people who cannot enjoy such luxuries, then maybe we can quit our jobs and fight their cause. Otherwise, these are just words we are peddling in the comfort of the forum.

    The thread just sounds like a rallying ground for people to take potshots at a convenient scapegoat.

  20. #120

    Default Re: What a turn-off!

    Quote Originally Posted by melnjes View Post
    Coming back to the original statement, I don't really see what is wrong with it. It just means everyone will be entitled to some level of medical care. Yes, ideally everyone should be entitled to the best medical care regardless of cost, but that's not going to happen, unless you want to pay for that person?

    I don't expect my children to take care of me when I'm old, and I certainly don't expect the government to do that. I'm glad enough that I have food on the table everyday, a roof over my head, can walk in the streets without fear of getting mugged and can sleep in peace during the night without thinking that my place will get looted in an overnight riot. If we feel so strongly for such people who cannot enjoy such luxuries, then maybe we can quit our jobs and fight their cause. Otherwise, these are just words we are peddling in the comfort of the forum.

    The thread just sounds like a rallying ground for people to take potshots at a convenient scapegoat.

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