Health Ministry shuts down Chinese Maternity Hospital

KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 22 — The Health Ministry has issued an order to the N.S. Chinese Maternity Hospital and Medical Centre (NSCMH) to suspend its in-patient services with immediate effect.

Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said this was because the hospital was found to have committed 10 violations of the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998.

“These violations encompass matters involving both in-patient and out-patient services. One such example is that NSCMH lacks full-time resident doctors in certain core disciplines, thus raising concerns about patient safety,” he said in a statement, here.

The statement dated yesterday was faxed to Bernama, here, today.

Dr Noor Hisham said the hospital was now not allowed to admit new patients and the existing in-patients were to be transferred to other hospitals as patient safety and quality of healthcare were of paramount importance to the ministry.

He said the suspension order followed a thorough investigation into a complaint received by the ministry in August and was substantiated by findings obtained during a verification visit to the hospital on Sept 4.

“The ministry had twice issued show-cause letters on Sept 18 and Oct 21 respectively, asking for the hospital to provide detailed response regarding the remedial actions that had been taken and those that were being planned in order to overcome these 10 violations.”

He said a special meeting was convened on Oct 17 with the hospital’s representatives and NSCMH life members, seeking detailed explanation for the 10 violations noted during the verification visit and also to discuss possible solutions to the problems faced by the hospital.

“The hospital’s management was given 14 working days to respond to the second show-cause letter dated Oct 21 and that period lapsed on Nov 8.

“Hence, due to the failure of the hospital’s management to adequately address and overcome these 10 violations, the ministry was left with no other option but to issue a notice of immediate suspension of in-patient services at the hospital in order to ensure safe medical practices and to protect the interest of the patients,” he said. — Bernama