PRESS STATEMENT MINISTER OF HEALTH MALAYSIA
The Ministry of Health wishes to refer to the documentary aired by international TV network Al-Jazeera, titled “Malaysia: Babies for Sale”, on 25 November 2016. The Ministry takes very serious attention to the numerous issues that have been highlighted in this documentary. Among others, this documentary raised issues related to the professionalism and the ethics of doctors involved in this unscrupulous practice, and the conduct of practice in the delivery of healthcare services in the country.
All medical practitioners are expected at all times to observe proper standards of personal behaviour in keeping with the dignity of the profession. Breach of the outlined standards of the professional ethics, i.e. involved in human trafficking activities, may amount to conduct that is derogatory to the reputation of the medical profession. On the other hand, all private healthcare facilities and services in Malaysia are controlled and regulated under the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998 and its subsidiaries. It is the responsibility of the healthcare facilities’ certificate / license holders to ensure that all the practices in the centres are within the legal ambit of any written laws in Malaysia.
On that note, the Ministry has already initiated an investigation specifically towards the doctors and healthcare facilities highlighted in this documentary. Depending on the result of the investigations, actions will be taken accordingly towards the doctors and healthcare facilities. This might include disciplinary actions by the Malaysian Medical Council, which may lead to deregistration (struck off) of the doctor from the Medical Register under the Medical Act 1971; revoke the certificate/license of the centres.
At the same time, the Ministry is urging the public to help curb this activity, by being more alert and willing to come forward with the relevant information, for further action by the relevant agencies. Thus, the participation of the community to be hand-in-hand with the Ministry in safeguarding the patients’ safety and the quality of our healthcare system is highly appreciated to assist in putting a stop to this dissolute activity.
*DATUK SERI DR. S. SUBRAMANIAM*
*MINISTER OF HEALTH MALAYSIA*
26th November 2016