What is the Difference Between the 6ME and the Medical Check Up for Work Permits?

elderly doctor examining an elderly patient

Singapore’s regulatory framework for foreign workers includes stringent health screening requirements to ensure the well-being of both the workers and the community. Two critical components of this framework are the 6 monthly medical examinations (6ME) and the medical check up for work permits. This article explores the differences between these two examinations, their purposes, and their procedures.

Understanding the 6 Monthly Medical Examination (6ME)

The 6 monthly medical examination (6ME) is a mandatory health screening for foreign domestic workers (FDWs) in Singapore. This examination is conducted every six months to monitor the health status of FDWs and to ensure they do not carry infectious diseases that could pose a risk to public health.

Purpose of the 6ME

The primary purpose of the 6ME is to detect common health issues and infectious diseases early. It focuses on:

In addition, the six-monthly medical examination (6ME) for migrant domestic workers (MDWs) in Singapore has been enhanced to help detect signs of abuse. These enhancements include recording the MDW’s height, weight, and BMI to monitor for significant weight loss, checking for suspicious injuries, ensuring the examination is done without the employer’s presence, and requiring all examination forms to be submitted to the Ministry of Manpower. These measures aim to create a safer environment and provide better support for MDWs.

Components of the 6ME

The 6ME typically includes:

  • Chest X-ray: To check for signs of tuberculosis.
  • Urine Test: To screen for pregnancy.
  • Blood Test: To check for STIs.

Frequency and Compliance

The 6ME must be conducted every six months. Employers are responsible for ensuring their workers attend these check-ups. Failure to comply can result in fines or the revocation of the work permit.

Medical Check Up for Work Permits

The medical check up for work permits is a comprehensive health screening required before a work permit is issued to a foreign worker. This initial screening ensures that the worker is fit for employment and free from serious health conditions that could affect their ability to work or pose a public health risk.

Purpose of the Medical Check Up for Work Permits

The main objectives of this medical check-up are:

  • Fitness for Work: To ensure the worker is physically and mentally capable of performing their job duties.
  • Public Health Safety: To identify any serious health conditions that could pose a risk to the public.

Components of the Medical Check Up for Work Permits

The medical check-up typically includes:

  • Physical Examination: A thorough check of the worker’s general health.
  • Blood Tests: To screen for infectious diseases such as HIV, syphilis, and other STIs.
  • Chest X-ray: To check for tuberculosis.
  • Vision and Hearing Tests: To ensure the worker’s senses are adequate for their job role.

Frequency and Compliance

This medical check-up is required once, before the issuance of the work permit. It ensures that only healthy and fit individuals enter the workforce.

Key Differences Between 6ME and Medical Check Up for Work Permits

While both the 6ME and the medical check up for work permits aim to safeguard public health and ensure worker fitness, they serve different purposes and are conducted at different stages of employment.

Timing and Frequency

  • 6ME: Conducted every six months throughout the employment period.
  • Medical Check Up for Work Permits: Conducted once before the issuance of the work permit.

Scope and Focus

  • 6ME: Focuses on detecting tuberculosis, pregnancy, and STIs in FDWs.
  • Medical Check Up for Work Permits: A comprehensive health screening to ensure overall fitness for work and to check for serious infectious diseases.

Target Population

  • 6ME: Specifically for foreign domestic workers.
  • Medical Check Up for Work Permits: For all foreign workers applying for a work permit in Singapore.

Importance of Compliance

Compliance with both the 6ME and the medical check up for work permits is crucial for maintaining a healthy workforce and protecting public health. Employers must understand their responsibilities and ensure their workers undergo these examinations as required.

Comprehensive Medical Examinations at Keystone Clinic & Surgery

Ensuring the health and safety of foreign workers is a priority in Singapore. Both the 6ME and the medical check up for work permits play a vital role in achieving this goal. If you are an employer or a foreign worker in need of medical examinations, it is essential to choose a reliable and professional medical provider.

At Keystone Clinic & Surgery, we offer comprehensive medical examinations tailored to meet the requirements of the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). Our experienced medical team ensures a smooth and efficient process, providing accurate results and peace of mind.

Visit our website to learn more about our services and to book your appointment today. Your health and compliance are our top priorities.

Understanding the differences between the 6ME and the medical check up for work permits is essential for both employers and foreign workers in Singapore. By adhering to these mandatory health checks, we can collectively ensure a healthy workforce and a safer community.


Mom.gov.sg. Six Monthly Medical Examination (6ME) for MDWs. https://www.mom.gov.sg/passes-and-permits/work-permit-for-foreign-domestic-worker/eligibility-and-requirements/six-monthly-medical-examination

Help.fwd.com.sg. What is Six Monthly Medical Examination Package?. https://help.fwd.com.sg/hc/en-us/articles/4404609718809-What-is-Six-monthly-Medical-Examination-package

Hih.com.sg. Six Monthly Medical Examination (6ME) for Maids in Singapore. https://hih.com.sg/six-monthly-medical-examination-6me-for-maids-in-singapore/

Mom.gov.sg. Medical Examination for Migrant Worker. https://www.mom.gov.sg/passes-and-permits/work-permit-for-foreign-worker/sector-specific-rules/medical-examination

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