Sunday, January 27, 2008

PHFSA's First Victim

This week I read in the NST that Dr Basmullah Yusom was the first doctor in the country to be convicted under the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998.

"Dr Basmullah, 44, had been operating the Al-Hilal Medical Centre Sdn Bhd at No 55, Jalan 5/76B, Desa Pandan, off Jalan Kampung Pandan, since 1998. The father of eight, who was charged on Dec 13 last year, had pleaded guilty to committing the offence at the premises at 10pm on July 11 last year.
Sentencing was fixed for yesterday. Under the act, he was liable to a maximum fine of RM500,000.
In mitigation, Dr Basmullah, who was unrepresented, pleaded for leniency, saying he did not register his clinic as he wanted to sell it and that he was not the only person running the clinic.
“I have financial problems and I still have to pay RM7,000 for the clinic and RM10,000 in personal loan,” he said.
Sentencing was fixed for yesterday. Under the act, he was liable to a maximum fine of RM500,000.
Dr Basmullah said he had since moved to Putrajaya claiming it was cheaper to live there and that he had sold his car and was using a motorcycle.
DPP Norfiza Mohamed Noordin from the Health Ministry pressed for a deterrent sentence.
“Unlicensed clinics make it hard for the ministry to monitor them to ensure that they do not illegally sell drugs or conduct illegal abortions. This is to ensure public safety.
“Being busy and having financial problems are not excuses for not registering the clinic,” she said."

I have read many comments posted by people, some even supporting the PHFSA and saying the doctor should have paid the rm1500 as he has a good income. I do not know him personally, but hello....not all doctors are rich and rolling in cash ok? And he has 8 kids to support, and had to sell his car also. A lot of doctors are financially challenged, trying to make ends meet, it is a fallacy that all doctors are rich.
In fact if you want to be rich, please don't become a doctor coz you won't have time to enjoy your wealth. In fact, ask your parents for the $500,000 they have to pay for your medical degree and go invest in some sound deals, bonds, or whatever. You will be much richer when in 5-6 years time.
When you graduate and start working in Malaysia, you will earn peanuts for 4 years. My starting pay was RM1600 a month, now it has improved to about RM2000 for a HO. As a MO you can get about RM2500-3000 a month, and as a specialist about RM6000 a month working for the government.
Then when you try to come out on your own, you are hit with the PHFSA, a RM1500 registration fee for a piece of paper. Better to become a bomoh or sinseh who don't have to spend good money to renovate their practice accoring to the PHFSA specification, and you will make much more money and even get away with rape and fraud.
Please go and catch those bogus doctors and cough mixture peddlers. Catch those who con cancer patients of all their life savings for a miracle cure. Please leave honest doctors alone. Thanks!

Update from the MMR :

"At 2 pm today,I was at Kajang Prison to visit an old comrade in arms, Dr.Basmullah Yusuf who has been sentenced to 3 months prison for unable to pay the RM120,000 fine imposed onto him for failing to register his clinic under the new Private Health Act. Dr.Basmullah is a caring dr who charges minimum fees for his services especially when serving his poor pts.With the paltry fees that he gets and having to fend 8 children of his own the good man now has to pay a hefty price.Words cannot describe my feelings when I saw him dressed in his prison clothes trying to put on a brave front for the sake of his tearful wife and children.A good kind hearted dr is now being treated like a common criminal.After seeing the case first hand and on the advice of a lawyer in order to get him out he has to pay the absurd fine and appeal later.The doctors who were there together with me were Drs Khalid,Wan Julia,Ikram,Suib,Jaafar and Rozita has pledged some funds to get the ball rolling."


At 9:28 AM, Blogger agfoxx @ kk said...

Agree with you totally.

At 9:08 PM, Blogger Palmdoc said...

Please support the Don't Jail Doctors Campaign

At 8:38 AM, Blogger See Teck said...

yes, yes, don't jail the doctors!

At 1:00 AM, Anonymous abgzac said...

sad to read this..if our docs thruout the country cld team up n maybe donate one patient's fee to Dr.Basmullah Yusuf, then we cld see a happier ending to this..

At 4:34 PM, Blogger pharmalogik said...

u Doctors will get pharmacist support too...good luck...

At 5:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

...Judge in this unfortunately established government ball carrier....too late for government....only opposition can right this wrong....


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