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Submitting a complaint

1. You wish to lodge a complaint against a doctor.

It is important that you understand the role of the SMC in the disciplinary process:

  • Is SMC the right place for you to lodge your complaint?
  • Should you try to resolve the matter with the doctor and/or healthcare institution concerned first? 
  • Can an order be made for the doctor to reduce a medical bill or give an explanation about what happened in a medical procedure?
  • What are other avenues available that you can consider to file a claim or complaint? 
  • How does the SMC handle a complaint?
  • What can you expect from the complaint?

Find information on the role of the SMC [PDF, 295KB] in handling complaints and instructions on submitting a

2. Prepare a type-written Letter of Complaint in English (“Letter”)

The Letter must state the full name of the doctor(s) and the allegations against the doctor(s), including any necessary detail, and include copies of all documents to support your complaint. You may refer to the Sample Letter.

3. Statutory Declaration

Under the Medical Registration Act (MRA), you must submit a written complaint accompanied by a Statutory Declaration (SD). You can search for a Commissioner for Oath (CO) from the Singapore Academy of Law’s website. You can print out a copy of the Statutory Declaration form.

4. Submitting your complaint

Once the SD has been duly endorsed, please scan it in colour and send us the following documents at You email submission should contain only two attachments in PDF format.  

a) First attachment: An endorsed SD, complaint letter and supporting documents should be consolidated in one PDF file; and 
b) Second attachment: A completed and signed copy of the letter of acknowledgement form (see page 6)

Please note that we will only be able to process your complaint when the above documents and information have been provided. SMC may reject any complaint or SD not made in compliance with the Singapore law or in accordance with its requirements

5. What happens next?

Upon receipt of a complaint, the CCP will first appoint an independent Inquiry Committee (“IC”) comprising two doctors from the Complaints Panel (“CP”), to conduct a preliminary inquiry into the complaint. During this stage, the complainant, doctor concerned, or any other person may be approached to provide any information or document deemed relevant for the purposes of the IC’s inquiry. The IC has 6 weeks to decide if the complaint should be dismissed or referred to a Complaints Committee (“CC”) to inquire into the matter and direct one or more investigators to investigate the matter.   

Should a complaint be referred to a CC, the CCP will then appoint an independent CC comprising two other doctors and one legal professional or layperson from the CP to conduct an inquiry into the complaint. A CC has 6 months to complete its inquiry. Should more time be required to investigate the complaint, the CC will submit a written request to the SMC to apply for an extension of time in the High Court.  

The CC’s inquiry may be delayed if the subject matter of the complaint involves external proceedings such as a police investigation, a Coroner’s Inquiry, Court proceedings, or if there are multiple doctors being complained against. Due to the formal and extensive nature of the fact-finding processes employed in those external proceedings, for example those by law enforcement agencies such as the Singapore Police Force and organs of state such as the Courts, the CC will usually wait for such findings before rendering its decision.
As all proceedings before the IC and CC are confidential, you will not receive periodic updates on the status of the inquiries. As the IC and CC are independent and separate bodies from the SMC, the SMC Secretariat is NOT EMPOWERED to release any information to you or anyone whom you have authorised during the inquiries. You will be informed in writing of the outcome of the IC or CC’s deliberations as soon as a decision has been reached. We seek your understanding in this regard.
In the event that a complaint requires a formal inquiry by a Disciplinary Tribunal (“DT”), the matter will be referred to the President of the Disciplinary Commission (“DC”). The DC is appointed by the Ministry of Health and carries out the function of appointing the DT. For more details on the DC’s functions, please refer to their website