The Complete Guide To Seeing A Dermatologist In Singapore (2020)

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I'm writing this post because "recommend me a good dermatologist in Singapore" is one of the questions I'm most often asked by friends -  now I can just direct them to this post.

A dermatologist (also known as skin specialist) is a medical doctor who commonly treats disease like acne and eczema in Singapore. 

This post explains in detail how to find a suitable dermatologist for your condition and treatment needs in Singapore.

It includes popular topics such as:

  • When to see a dermatologist for acne, acne scar removal, or eczema, versus seeing a GP or aesthetic doctor
  • The different types of dermatologist in Singapore (yes, dermatologists have different types of qualifications and subspecialties!)
  • The costs of seeing a dermatologist in private versus in public
  • How to find the best dermatologist for your needs 

The final section of this article compiles the best dermatologists and skin clinics in Singapore for 2020, as reviewed by patients. 

You can head to this link if you want to find and book dermatologists in Singapore, as sorted by patient reviews or location.

How can one train to be a dermatologist in Singapore? 

doctor speaking to a lady patient

In Singapore, training to become a dermatology specialist requires an additional 6 years after completing med school - this comprises:

  • 3 years of internal medicine training
  • 3 years of advanced specialist training in dermatology

Almost every dermatologist in Singapore will have spent a significant amount of time at the National Skin Centre as part of their training. Others are rotated across various teaching hospitals, such as SGH, NUH, and CGH.

How senior or experienced is the dermatologist treating you?

At the end of 6 years of dermatology training, doctors exit the training programme as an associate dermatology consultant. [1]

It typically takes another 1 year to progress from associate consultant to consultant.

Senior consultant is a title that's only conferred by public institutions (this means that a dermatologist in private cannot hold the title). The journey from consultant to senior consultant can take more than 5 years. 

Most dermatologists in private are consultants since they want to accrue experience in public hospitals before setting up their own private practice.

You can use SMC's doctor directory search to find the exact year your doctor specialised. 

How to find the best and most experienced dermatologists in Singapore

Using the above example, you can tell that this doctor has 6 years of experience as a dermatologist, from 2014 - 2020.

The private versus public dermatologist route in Singapore

Dermatologist Singapore National Skin Centre

As with most medical specialities in Singapore, the tradeoff between choosing the public and the private route is primarily one of time and convenience, versus costs.

It's always quicker seeing a dermatologist in private practice - clinic front desks are normally happy to give you an appointment within 1 to 2 days. Most accept walk-in patients too.

On the other hand, the wait time to see a dermatologist under subsidised care at the National Skin Centre (NSC) can take up to 4 - 6 weeks, and they do not accept walk-ins. [2]

Of course, you also have the option to see an NSC dermatologist via the unsubsidised "private route". This allows you to:

  • Choose and follow up with the same dermatologist
  • Get a quicker appointment date

Pro tip: If you decide to see a dermatologist for a skin rash via the public route, it'd help to take a photo of your rash :-) I can't count the number of times I've seen a patient who had perfectly normal-looking skin by the time they showed up four weeks later. Unfortunately, doctors aren't mind-readers!

How much does it cost to see a dermatologist in Singapore?

piggy bank and coins

Private dermatologists typically charge about $120 - $140 for a first consultation.

Medications will typically add on another $150 - $300 in total to your final bill.

At the NSC, the subsidised rates for seeing a dermatologist are as follows:

ConsultationSingapore CitizenSingapore PR
First Consultation$36.00$54.00
Follow-up Consultation$34 .00$51.00

Even if you go as a new patient via a polyclinic referral, rest assured that a consultant will still be seeing you on your first visit. However, you'll usually first be seen by a Medical Officer beforehand (it is a teaching hospital, after all).

If you chose to see a dermatologist at the NSC via the private route, the rates are adjusted according to the seniority of the doctor:

First ConsultationResidentNon Resident
Senior Consultant$121.00$139.14
Consultant$110.00$126.50
Assoc Consultant$97.00$111.55
Follow-up Consultation  
Senior Consultant$90.00$103.50
Consultant$79.00$90.84
Assoc Consultant$68.00$78.20

How much does it cost to see a dermatologist for skin procedures and aesthetic treamtents in Singapore? 

a woman looking at her face in a mirror

Skin procedures are costly in Singapore because they are almost always deemed to be cosmetic, and hence not eligible for any subsidies or Medisave claims.

Multiple treatment sessions are also frequently required for the best results, which means that your bill can quickly add up.

For cosmetic skin procedures, there are minimal differences in costs between going to see a public dermatologist or one in private practice. Examples would include:

  • Fractional lasers for acne scars
  • Injectables such as botox and dermal fillers
  • Chemical peels
  • Mole removal (for cosmetic purposes)
  • Pigmentation, melasma, and birthmark removal

You can refer to this article on aesthetic treatment and costs in Singapore to get a better idea of the average price ranges.

This other guide post by an aesthetic doctor provides a comprehensive overview of all the aesthetic treatments available in Singapore

Certain skin procedures at the NSC may be eligible for subsidies or Medisave Claims if there is a medical need. One example would be a suspicious mole that needs to be removed and sent for a biopsy to rule out cancer.

Unfortunately, this is determined on a case by case basis - the dermatologist you consult will decide if there is a medical need for you to undergo the procedure.

How do you get a subsidy for seeing a dermatologist in Singapore?

doctor taking notes on clipboard 

To qualify for subsidised care to see a dermatologist, you need to:

  • Be a Singaporean or a Permanent Resident (holding a Singapore NRIC), and
  • Obtain a referral letter from a Polyclinic, or from an SAF medical officer/camp

Patients who do NOT qualify for any subsidies at the NSC include:

  • All foreigners
  • Those referred to see a specific dermatologist
  • Referrals made by a private doctor or private hospital

Common skin conditions (such as eczema, skin allergies, and acne) can be adequately managed by polyclinic GPs at nominal fees. Polyclinics also stock most of the medications given for these conditions. [3]

However, if your skin condition is not responding to treatment, or if they deem it necessary, polyclinic doctors will refer you on to see a dermatologist at the National Skin Centre.

Do note - you must obtain a polyclinic referral letter to see a dermatologist at the National Skin Centre for subsidized care! 

If you make a walk-in appointment at the National Skin Centre with no polyclinic referral letter, you'll be charged as a private patient and end up paying a whole lot more.  

What are the types of dermatologists in Singapore?

This is perhaps a gross oversimplification, but there are 2 main "types" of dermatologists in Singapore:

1. Dermatologists with a focus or interest in medical dermatology. They are vastly experienced at diagnosing and managing skin disease such as:

  • Skin cancers
  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Paediatric dermatology
  • Psoriasis
  • Autoimmune skin conditions
  • Skin allergies
  • Hair loss
  • Nail disorders

Also Read: The Ultimate Guide to Skin Cancer in Singapore (2020)


2. Cosmetic dermatologists. These are dermatologists who focus mainly on providing aesthetic skin treatments, such as:

  • Lasers
  • Botox/fillers
  • Threadlifts

As a rule of thumb, dermatologists at the National Skin Centre generally belong to the first category. However, there are senior dermatologists at the National Skin Centre who also provide cosmetic dermatology services via the private Procedure Suites section of the hospital.

On the other hand, private dermatologists usually provide some degree of overlap in services - ie they see medical dermatology patients and provide cosmetic skin treatment.

Not many Singaporeans know this, but dermatologists in Singapore are also trained to diagnose and manage sexually transmitted disease (STDs) - the DSC Clinic (Department of STI Control) is fully staffed, and run by dermatologists.

Just in case you were wondering as to the link between dermatologists and STDs, it's because many STDs commonly present with skin rashes as one of the first signs (eg. genital warts, HIV, and syphilis). [4]

Dermatologists for treating acne and acne scars, versus GPs and aesthetic doctors - what's the difference?

Polyclinic doctors and private GPs generally have limited topical creams and treatments for acne. Treatment options they commonly provide include:

  • Topical acne creams such as Benzoyl Peroxide cream
  • Antibiotics such as oral Doxycycline

Polyclinic doctors and GPs generally do not treat acne scars. GPs also tend to be more reluctant to prescribe Roaccutane for acne in Singapore, compared to dermatologists. 

If you're considering further treatment options for your acne or to treat your acne scars, you may prefer to see a dermatologist instead. Treatment options that dermatologists provide include:

  • Topical Retinoids
  • Oral isotretinoin (Roaccutane) 
  • Laser treatments 

Aesthetic doctors or aesthetic dermatologists tend to have the most expensive and latest options for acne and acne scar treatment. Do your research beforehand however, as latest/expensive does not mean most effective. 

What about seeing a dermatologist for eczema, versus seeing a GP?

GPs and polyclinic doctors are very proficient at handling mild to moderate eczema cases. This is because most eczema cases respond to topical treatment with moisturizers and steroid cream.  

Dermatologists in Singapore tend to deal with more severe cases of eczema. Correspondingly, they also have more advanced treatment options than GPs. This may include:

  • Topical calcineurin inhibitors: Creams that do not contain steroids, such as Tacrolimus. This tends to be more expensive and can cause a slight burning sensation. However, they do not thin the skin, unlike steroid creams. 
  • Phototherapy:  UVA-1 phototherapy is effective in treating eczema that affects your hands/palms and feet/soles. The main side effects are tanning of the treated skin area.
  • Oral steroid and immunosuppressants: Oral steroids may be prescribed in severe cases of eczema. Your dermatologist may also suggest an oral immunosuppressant to control your eczema flare-ups. 

Which dermatologists treat hair loss in Singapore?

All dermatologists can diagnose and treat hair loss in Singapore. The 2 most common treatments for hair loss are:

  • Minoxidil shampoo
  • Oral Finasteride (Propecia) - only used for men

Do note that not all dermatologists provide hair transplant treatment as this requires a team of trained hair transplant technicians. Do call up the dermatologist clinic beforehand to check!

How can you find a good dermatologist in Singapore for your needs?

acne on a young womans face

First of all, you may want to find out whether the doctor you're considering is indeed a dermatology specialist. It is easy to check their specialist status on this website.

Some doctors possess a Diploma in Dermatology - this is not the same as a specialist qualification, which requires a much longer training period.

As explained earlier, other factors to take into consideration are:

  • Time/convenience versus cost (public vs private route)
  • Purpose (medical vs cosmetic dermatology)
  • Type of skin procedure required (some clinics do not offer specific types of treatment or machines) 

lady doing online research in her living room

With this information in hand, you can then call the practice directly to enquire about the treatment you desire.

At your consultation, do see if you are able to form a good rapport with the dermatologist. Ultimately, I feel that the key factor in receiving the best treatment is in finding a doctor whom you can trust, and are able to communicate well with.

11 best dermatologist clinics in Singapore for 2020, as reviewed by patients 

Editor's note: 

Our editorial team is adding this section because "best dermatologist clinic in Singapore" is one of the most Googled terms, receiving well over 3700 searches each month - so we figured that we'd just help everyone else out at once.

This article rounds up the best dermatologist clinics in Singapore, as reviewed by patients in 2020. 

Note: This list is strictly not in order.

1. National Skin Centre (NSC)

Dermatologist Singapore National Skin Centre

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Steven Thng
  • Dr Melissa Tan Wee Ping
  • Dr Roy Chan
  • Dr Leow Yung Hian
  • Dr Martin Chio
  • Dr Chong Wei Sheng
  • and many more

Address: 1 Mandalay Rd, Singapore 308205

Phone6253 4455

Opening hours:

  • 8am  5pm (Mon  Fri)
  • Closed on Sat/Sun/PH

You can request to see a dermatologist privately at the NSC. Even if you go as a new patient via a polyclinic referral, rest assured that a consultant will still be seeing you on your first visit. We'd suggest the former method though, for shorter waiting times and the ability to choose your consultant and have follow-up visits with the same consultant.

Our team has only good things to say about Dr Steven Thng, if you're fortunate enough to book in with him (he's usually terribly busy). He's one of the cheeriest and friendliest doctors around.

We are also huge fans of Dr Melissa Tan Wee Ping, if you ever need any laser or cosmetic procedures at the NSC. She's super skilful and sweet in person. We've recommended many of our friends to see her.

Dr Roy Chan, Dr Leow Yung Hian, Dr Martin Chio, Dr Chong Wei Sheng are all amazing too. To be honest, there are too many great consultants at the NSC to name all of them here.

2. The Skin Specialists and Laser Clinic

Dr Colin Theng

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Colin Theng
  • Dr Mark Tang

Address: 820 Thomson Road, Mount Alvernia Medical Centre D, #07-61, Singapore 574623

Phone: 6262 6298

Opening hours: 

  • 8.30am – 5.30pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 8.30pm – 1pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Colin Theng and Dr Mark Tang are the dermatologists at The Skin Specialists and Laser Clinic.

Incidentally, we found out recently that Dr Colin Theng is the brother of Dr Julian Theng from Eagle Eye Centre!

Dr Colin Theng is super friendly, and always wears a big smile. Before founding The Skin Specialists and Laser Clinic, he was the former chief of the Psoriasis Unit and Phototherapy Unit at the NSC, where he managed challenging psoriasis and eczema cases. He also has vast experience (over 10 years) in laser surgery.

3. Stephanie Ho Dermatology

Image result for stephanie ho dermatology

Dermatologist:

  • Dr Stephanie Ho

Address: 9 Scotts Road, Pacific Plaza, Scotts Medical Center #08-05, Singapore 228210

Phone: 6262 0880

Opening hours: 

  • 9am – 6pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 9am – 1pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Stephanie Ho is a consultant dermatologist who trained in the UK and is a registered skin specialist in the UK and Singapore. If you are looking for skin cancer screening, surgical removal of skin lesions, lasers for skin aesthetics and skin medicine for children and teens, you can consider Dr Ho; these are her areas of interest.

Dr Ho's experience is impressive; she trained in specialist dermatology in London, worked at various prestigious hospitals in the UK and even researched on the use of lasers and lights at The University of Hong Kong.

Dr Ho is also the author of many articles in international peer-reviewed journals and has contributed to book chapters on dermatology. Before setting up her own practice, Dr Ho was a consultant dermatological surgeon at the NSC

Evidently, Dr Ho is passionate in all things related to skin health and is not shy about sharing that knowledge. Check out her numerous answers to skin-related QnAs!

4. Dermatology & Co

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Tan Wei Sheng
  • Dr Ker Khor Jia

Address: 6 Napier Road, #09-07, Gleneagles Medical Centre, Singapore 258499

Phone: 6775 0907

Opening hours: 

  • 8.30am – 5.30pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 8.30am – 12.30pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Tan Wei Sheng and Dr Ker Khor Jia run Dermatology & Co together. 

With more than 24 years of experience between them, they are adept at treating an extensive range of skin diseases and conditions, from eczema to skin cancer and skin ageing.

Dr Tan graduated from the National University of Singapore's medical school with flying colours. Not only was he top of his class, he was on the Dean’s list for 5 years straight. Besides his expertise in dermatology, Dr Tan also possesses a subspecialty interest in sexually transmitted diseases.

Dr Ker was trained both in Singapore and in the United States, with more than 12 years of expertise in laser and skin surgery, paediatric dermatology, eczema, immune-related skin diseases and hair disorders under her belt. She is often invited to speak at local and overseas conferences. She is currently a course instructor for the Dermatological Society of Singapore's Aesthetic Practice Competency Course,

5. Children and Adult Skin Hair and Laser Clinic

Singapore Dermatologist Dr Lynn Chiam Children and Adult Skin, Hair and Laser Clinic

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Lynn Chiam

Address: 38 Irrawaddy Road, Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Medical Centre, #07-22, Singapore 329563

Phone: 6570 2303

Opening hours: 

  • 9am – 12.30pm, 2pm – 5pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 9am – 12.30pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Lynn Chiam runs the Children and Adult Skin Hair and Laser Clinic alone. She was previously the head of the Paediatric Dermatology Unit at NSC before leaving for private practice, and also served as a visiting consultant at the National University Hospital's Department of Paediatrics.

If you haven't gathered by now, she's really well known for treating children's rashes – especially seeing as how she has 4 children of her own!

It's generally rather difficult to find paediatric dermatologists in Singapore. If our nephews or nieces get a rash, we'd take them to see her without hesitation.

6. Dermatology Associates

Singapore Dermatologists Associates

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Ang Por
  • Dr Chan Yuin Chew
  • Dr Lawrence Khoo Shih Wee
  • Dr Patricia Ng Pei Lin

Address: 290 Orchard Rd, Paragon (Office Tower), #15-05/06, Singapore 238859

Phone6333 8108

Opening hours: 

  • 8.30am – 5.30pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 8.30am – 12.30pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dermatology Associates is run by 4 dermatologists – Dr Ang Por, Dr Chan Yuin Chew, Dr Lawrence Khoo Shih Wee and Dr Patricia Ng Pei Lin.

It's one of the largest private dermatology specialist groups in Singapore, comprising three clinics and a comprehensive range of laser equipment.

Prior to setting up Dermatology Associates in 2005, Dr Ang was the chief of the dermatological surgery and laser unit at the NSC, performing skin cancer surgery and skin surgical procedures. She's known for making plenty of time for her patients, which is why they love her.

7. Dermatology and Surgery Clinic

Singapore Dermatology and Surgery Clinic

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Melvin Ee Hock Leong
  • Dr Raymond Kwah Yung Chien
  • Dr Henry Loh
  • Dr Tay Liang Kiat

Address: 290 Orchard Road, Paragon (Office Tower), #15-09, Singapore 238859

Phone6733 2668

The Dermatology and Surgery Clinic is also one of the largest private dermatology practices in Singapore, comprising three clinics located at Orchard Road, Raffles Place and East Coast. It's run by 4 dermatologists – Dr Melvin Ee Hock Leong, Dr Raymond Kwah Yung Chien, Dr Henry Loh and Dr Tay Liang Kiat.

They have a special focus on skin surgery and treating skin cancers, and are well known in the community for performing Mohs Micrographic Surgery.

Dr Melvin was formerly the chief of the skin cancer clinic and Mohs micrographic surgical service at the NSC, where he pioneered and established Mohs micrographic surgical services in Singapore.

8. Thomson Specialist Skin Centre

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Tan Hiok Hee
  • Dr Audrey Tan Wei Hsia

Address: 10 Sinaran Drive, Novena Medical Center, Square 2, #10-05, Singapore 307506

Phone6397 6006

Opening hours:

  • 8am – 5pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 8am – 12pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Tan Hiok Hee and Dr Audrey Tan Wei Hsia run Thomson Specialist Skin Centre. The clinic treats patients with skin, hair and nail problems, as well as provides screening and treatment of sexually transmitted infections. It is also known for eczema and hives treatment.

Dr Tan Hiok Hee was previously the consultant in charge of the acne clinic at NSC, and also helmed the Department of Sexually Transmitted Infections Control. He's still a visiting consultant at the NSC and is one of the most mild-mannered and kind doctors we've met.

9. SOG - HM Liew Skin & Laser Clinic

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Liew Hui Min

Address: Gleneagles Medical Centre, 6 Napier Road #06-01, Singapore 258499

Phone: 6254 6646

Opening hours: 

  • 8.30am – 5.30pm (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri) 
  • 8.30am – 12.30pm (Wed & Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Liew Hui Min is a member of Singapore O&G Ltd. (SOG), a specialist healthcare group dedicated to women’s & children’s health and wellness.

With more than 12 years of experience in dermatology, Dr Liew's practice focuses on children and women's dermatology, genital dermatology, in addition to general medical adult dermatology.

Being fluent in English, Bahasa, and Chinese (Mandarin, Hokkien and Cantonese dialects), Dr Liew is able to seamlessly communicate with her patients both local and abroad.

10. Tham Siew Nee Skin Clinic

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Tham Siew Nee
  • Dr Koh Hong Yi

Address: Gleneagles Medical Centre, 6 Napier Road #07-08, Singapore 258499

Phone: 6476 6821 

Opening hours: 

  • Monday - 9am to 1pm, 2pm to 5pm
  • Tuesday to Friday - 8.30am to 1pm, 2pm to 5pm
  • Saturday - 8.30am to 1pm

Founded in 1996, Tham Siew Nee Skin Clinic aims to provide personal and high-quality dermatologic care to its patients.

The clinic is run by Dr Tham Siew Nee and Dr Koh Hong Yi, who have more than 60 years of clinical experience combined between them!

Dr Koh Hong Yi was previously trained at the National Skin Centre, where he treated many patients with complex skin conditions. He also had a distinguished career in Singapore General Hospital, where he founded the SGH Mohs micrographic surgery service for high risk skin cancers.

11. Joyce Lim Skin & Laser Clinic

Dermatologists:

  • Dr Joyce Lim

Address: 290 Orchard Road #11-16/20, Paragon Medical Suites, Singapore 238859

Phone: 6834 9159

Opening hours: 

  • 8.30am – 6.15pm (Mon – Fri)
  • 9am – 12pm (Sat)
  • Closed on Sun/PH

Dr Joyce Lim has over 20 years of experience under her belt, and specialises in dermatologic and laser surgery.

Dr Lim has completed preceptorships under renowned dermatologists/dermatologic and laser surgeons in both Europe and USA.

She is also one of the founding directors of Aesthetic Dermatology Educational Group (ADEG), which conducts courses and issues certificates to doctors who wish to learn aesthetic procedures.


This editorial section solely expresses the opinion of DxD and is not endorsed nor commissioned by any external party. The list is non-exhaustive. At DxD, we believe that your best provider of medical advice is your doctor. Please consult your doctor before undergoing any treatment or procedure. To find a comprehensive list of dermatologists in Singapore, please click here.

This article was published on Tuesday, 2 January 2018. DxD medically reviewed the article on Tuesday, 2 January 2018. The last update was made on Thursday, 22 October 2020.

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