Singaporeans suffering from chronic conditions such as Crohn's disease can now breathe a sigh of relief. The sufferers can now show a “can't wait card” in emergency conditions to skip the toilet queue, without having to provide an explanation for doing so.
Nearly 2,000 people suffer from Crohn's disease in Singapore. Such people feel the urge to visit a toilet frequently and constantly. Now with the help of a “can't wait card,” such people can safely skip ahead others in the queue to avoid a potentially embarrassing situation.
The Crohn’s and Colitis Society in Singapore is initially distributing the “orange pass” to around 100 patients in Singapore. The card is already in use and widely accepted in a few other countries, including Australia, Britain and Canada.
A person suffering from Crohn's disease, also known as ulcerative colitis, can experience severe stomach pains and diarrhea. In a few extreme cases, the person might even need to go to toilet up to 22 times a day. Even though the patients are administered with medications to control the flare-ups, they might still visit the toilet five to six times a day.
Rosie Foo, a Crohn's disease sufferer, shared her story, describing how reaching a loo on time is an everyday struggle since she has been diagnosed with the condition. The 62-year-old housewife always carries a set of spare clothes and an adult diaper while leaving home and makes sure to wear flat shoes, in case she needs to immediately rush to the restroom.
Although researchers have yet to develop a cure for the condition, the availability of the orange pass has definitely brought some sought of relief for the patients till then. According to Dr. David Ong, a consultant at the National University Hospital, the number of reported cases of Crohn's disease have risen exponentially, from 9 to 1,500 between 1981 and 2015.
“It could partially be due to the Westernization of our lifestyles -- more processed food, more antibiotics. Those factors are still being studied,” he said.
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