Dr Chan Guek Cheng Noreen
Senior Consultant, Department of Haematology-Oncology
"I hear people say that they have no choice, every day they have to go to work. But we do have choices. Every day, I can choose to just "do my job", or I can choose to honour my professional calling. I can choose to make that difference."
Determined to specialize in Palliative Medicine (when there was hardly any awareness in 1997), Dr Noreen Chan overcame the odds and became the second overseas doctor to successfully complete training with the Sydney Institute of Palliative Medicine and was admitted to the newly formed Chapter of Palliative Medicine of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians.
Invited to head the Dover Park Hospice as its medical Director and CEO in 2004, Dr Chan started expanding the range of patients accepted, to include those on palliative chemotherapy who would need specialized palliative care and even occasional patients on infusional chemotherapy. During her time in NCC, she got involved in professional societies and organizations to further the cause of pain management and palliative care. Dr Chan was also part of the Asia Pacific Hospice Network soon after its formation in 2001 and has been active on its council since then. She was part of a project by the Singapore International Foundation (2005 - 2007) and APHN to help build capacity for palliative care in Vietnam, where she led the Ho Chi Minh City team to work with a palliative care unit in Cho Ray Hospital and providing training and mentoring to the PCU doctors and nurses.
For at least ten years, she has been contributing her time to the Singapore Hospice Council, mostly in coordinating and delivering education activities. Being a great believer in inter-professional team work and learning, Dr Chan has also taught Nursing and Allied Health Professionals and was appointed to the National Strategy for Palliative Care Workgroup and chairs its Education Group in 2011.