BLOGGER: WERE THE DOCTORS BEING RACIST OR WERE THESE CASES OF SOMETHING ELSE?
Health Minister Dr S Subramaniam: No, these were NOT cases of racism.
He said members of the investigation committee have spoken to several patients said to be were victims of the “racism”.
“They were unhappy with the treatment by the doctors. We have identified many factors for this, included poor communication skills and lack of clinical competency,” he said.
The Health Ministry did not detect any element of racism in its investigation into complaints of allegedly racist doctors in Penang over their “refusal” to treat Malay patients.
“So far, it does not look like that, but there are elements of poor communication, where the doctors did not communicate very well with the patients,” Health Minister Dr S Subramaniam said.
“It just so happened that the doctors are Chinese Malaysians and the patients are Malays,” Subramanian said after attending a dinner hosted by the Health Ministry in Penang last night, which was attended by 180 state MIC branch chiefs.
Subramanian was asked to comment on the progress of the probe and if there was any element of racism in the alleged refusal of the doctors to treat their patients.
Friday July 26, 2013 MYT 2:52:07 PM
Dr Subramaniam: “Racist doctors” probe to be made public
KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Ministry will inform the public of the results of its probe into allegations of doctors in Penang practising racism when treating their patients.
Minister Datuk Seri Dr S Subramaniam said they would also announce the action to be taken once the investigation into the matter was completed.
“We have started the investigation and are taking reports from a few parties including the patients,” he told reporters at Open University Malaysia here on Friday.
Thursday July 25, 2013 MYT 4:15:45 PM
Guan Eng Vs Dr Subra over probe into racist doctors claim
GEORGE TOWN: Several Pakatan leaders are annoyed with a statement made by Health Minister Datuk Dr S.Subramaniam that the Penang government was not being cooperative in the investigation over an allegation that some Chinese doctors are refusing to treat non-Chinese patients.
Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng said his office did not receive any request for any information from the Health Ministry and expressed disappointment at Dr Subramaniam’s statement.
Lim said the state government was always ready to help.
I have been following the entire ‘racist Chinese doctors’ issue since it was first raised.
Initially, I was disinterested because it was a spat between Pinang Tunggal assemblyperson Roslan Saidin and the Penang state exco member for health, Dr Afif Bahardin.
It is easy for people to accuse me of playing a racial game since this is a spat between a Malay and a Malay over a few ‘racist’ doctors. However, I feel it is time that something has to be said about Umno Baru’s frequent attempts at playing the race card.
Just because the doctors happen to be Chinese, and the victims are Malays, Roslan is making a big issue out of a molehill and trying to hit out during the Penang state assembly. In the first place, doctors do not come under the state bssembly or the state exco member for health, but Dr Afif is being fair to speak up for those who were not allowed to speak to the media.
It is entirely up to Roslan, but the world can judge whether the issue is racial in nature or just the behaviour of the doctors who either need counseling or a reprimand. Therefore, Roslan, please stop the spat and playing the race card, especially during the holy month of Ramadan. I am surprised that you are still barking up the wrong tree after you were told that you were wrong and the complaint should be raised with the Health Ministry.
So, what’s the big deal of trying to prove to the world that the victims were Malays and the doctors were Chinese? Roslan should look at the issue as cases of perhaps ill-treatment or poor patient management skills by certain doctors, rather than playing up the racial card.
Incidents more related to service and ethics
“Even Jahara (Umno’s Teluk Ayer Tawar assemblyperson) said the incidents were more related to the issue of delivery of service, ethics and professionalism of civil servants, of the doctors and paramedics in public hospitals,” Afif pointed out.
Pinang Tunggal assemblyperson Roslan Saidin has been told to apologise for misleading the state legislative assembly with his allegations of “racist Chinese Malaysian doctors” who refused to treat their Malay patients.
Afif said his office was still waiting for the findings of the investigation carried out by Health Ministry and the Health Department in Penang.
‘No evidence of racism presented’
“However, there is no evidence of racism among the doctors for refusing to treat their Malay patients, based on the accounts of the victims who came forward yesterday,” Afif said in a statement today.
“Nor have the revelations any ties with what was alleged by Roslan (right) in the assembly, that the incidents were due to the Chinese tsunami – where the community withdrew its support for BN in the 13th general election,” he added.
Afif said yesterday’s revelations by the four victims appeared more like problems of professionalism and doctor-patient communication.
He added that none of the victims said that the doctors they saw refused to treat them because they were Malays.
“Roslan’s earlier allegations that the doctors acted in a racist manner because of the Chinese tsunami in the May 5 election are twisted,” said Afif, who is also Seberang Jaya assemblyperson.
“The evidence and statements by the victims do not seem to support Roslan’s allegations of racism,” he added.
THEY ASKED FOR PROOF, AND HERE IS THE PROOF!
Four ‘victims’ make accusations at a press conference:
The four were among six complainants who Roslan said were referred to him after the May 5 general election.
The four accusers
1 Hamid Salleh, 66, of Tasek Gelugor on mainland Penang went to see the doctor in Kepala Batas in June and was “shocked” that the doctor treated him as such, adding that he could have punched thr doctor, but he restrained himself..
2 Norzawani Zakaria (left), 28, went to see a doctor in Kepala Batas on May 29 when she experienced “bad headaches, vomiting and blurred vision”.
“I argued with the doctor and told her to admit me, but she did not so I went to a private clinic,” added Norzawani, who said she was about five months pregnant then.
“I found out that my blood pressure was 160/110 and the private doctor gave me a reference to go to the hospital again,” said Norzawani who works with Jabatan Kemajuan Masyarakat (Kemas).
3 Shahidah Saad, 27, sought treatment at the Seberang Jaya Hospital on May 28, after she started having extreme pain on her right leg. She said she felt that the metal plate in her leg was probably broken and needed to be replaced.
“But the doctor, a male, said I should go home and wait for three weeks and see if my leg still hurt,” she lamented.
4 Mariam Mansor was furious that she was chided by a doctor for taking her child, who was suffering from breathing problems, to the Kepala Batas Hospital emergency ward.
Mariam said she went there to seek treatment for her four-month-old son on June 21. He was already blue in the face, but they were sent away without any medication, she said.
Their complaints involved four doctors – five cases in Kepala Batas and one in Seberang Jaya, Roslan told the press conference.
Roslan said he has submitted a report on all the complaints to the state health department, where a probe is ongoing.
Roslan: Revelations proof I did not lie
“The revelations by these victims prove that I did not make up the allegations, or lie in the state assembly on July 3, when I raised the issue of racist doctors.
eader and Teluk Ayer Tawar assemblyperson Jahara Hamid and assemblypersons Mohamad Zin Ahmah (Penaga) and Shah Hedan Ayoob Husin Shah (Pulau Betong).
The press conference was called in response to the demand from state executive councillor on health Dr Afif Bahardin (left) to Roslan yesterday to publicly apologise to all doctors since he had no proof of his allegations.
Jahara said this was not a racial issue but one that involved the “delivery system of the hospitals, ethics and competency of doctors”.
Meanwhile, Afif said when he made the statement, he was unaware of the report that Roslan submitted to the state health department.
He said the probe would be completed in a few days and thanked Roslan for submitting his report, “although it has been long overdue”.
However, Roslan, upon hearing this, wanted Afif to apologise to the families of the victims or resign from his state exco post for saying that he (Roslan) had made up the stories.
“He is new and rash. He should be act more maturely and be more open to hearing complaints related to his portfolio,” said Roslan.
Afif is Seberang Jaya assemblyperson and state PKR Youth vice-chief.