A few years back, there was a posting in the papers by a person who was complaining that his mom was diagnosed with terminal stage cancer when she had gone for regular health screenings at a polyclinic for the past 20 years...
There is a common misconception that if I passed a basic health screening test, I am "healthy and fit".
Most of the "free" or "cheap" health screenings only check the cholesterol level, blood pressure, blood sugar, obesity, etc. These are mostly coronary tests as heart attacks and strokes are the top 5 killers in Singapore.
But if there's no chest X-rays or CT scans, there's no way anyone can know whether you have early stage lung cancer.
Same goes for the no.1 type of cancer for males in Singapore - Colorectal cancer. If there's no test for blood in your stool, the doctor would not have the early warning to recommend a more invasive colonoscopy test.
Yes, we have to do our part by asking questions and getting ourselves acquainted with what the health screening tests are for; and their limitations.
Plus we need to tell our doctor our family history of illnesses if you not sure which are hereditary or not. The doctor then can recommend what additional tests we should do as a precaution if we belong to the high risk group.
If you are a smoker and heavy drinker, and you lie to the doctor, well... it's your life; your problem!
And yes, more tests; more money. That's why it's better to have a conversation with your family doctor so you don't pay for tests you don't need.
I see the same misconceptions when it comes to the field of "investing".
Just listen to the blaming and finger pointing when "investors" lose money in MAS approved financial products and CPF approved stocks.
I know SGX has a better reputation than some other regional bourses, but to assume all SGX listed stocks are "healthy and fit"?
Some even got the cheek to question whether Temasek or GIC got do due diligence on their stock investments? When these investors were freeloaders who piggybacked on the coattails of Temasek and GIC...
There's nothing wrong in following others like lemmings. Just as long you understand and accept the risks involved.
A little knowledge is more dangerous than no knowledge