Singapore Airlines (SIA) will commence customer service training for Patient Care Officers (PCO) at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital (KTPH) this September, with programmes tailored to the healthcare institution’s requirements and conducted by the flag carrier’s cabin crew trainers.
This is the first time that SIA is extending its training and development services outside the organisation. Cabin crew trainers will lead a three-day course, which forms part of a complete 20-day training curriculum for the PCOs, focusing on effective interpersonal communication and customer handling, and exemplifying values such as empathy, warmth and person-centred care.
The PCO is a new role created to support doctors, nurses and allied health staff in providing quality care service, caregiving and end-to-end care coordination for patients in the ward. It was inspired by the Care Ambassadors programme that KTPH and SIA jointly launched in this April. Care Ambassadors are staff from the SIA Group that have been been deployed to KTPH to support the care teams in the hospital. There are today 60 Care Ambassadors at work.
Yen Tan, COO, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, said: “We have had a fruitful journey with SIA’s Care Ambassadors, who often put in the extra mile to work with our nurses, helping us to provide care good enough for our loved ones. After experiencing healthcare, many Care Ambassadors have expressed to us the joy of serving patients in healthcare.
“Their enthusiasm and dedication to service inspired us to create a new role – Patient Care Officer. This role will support the clinical work of the nurses and allows our hospitals to provide better end-to-end care for patients. This crisis showed us that there are people who want to serve in healthcare, but they are waiting for the right opportunity.”
Vanessa Ng, SIA’s senior vice president of human resources, added: “We may all be behind masks due to the pandemic, but our signature personal touch and intuitive care remain the key differentiator in the service industry. SIA can support companies and organisations with our experience and expertise in this area, and adapt our courses to meet their specific customer and industry requirements.”
SIA and KTPH are also exploring other potential areas of collaboration beyond the service sector.
This includes the possible application of SIA’s crew resource management practices – a wide range of skills that are used to enhance flight safety and reduce human error – to KTPH’s operations.