’Bogus’ doctors set to appear in court
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DURBAN - The Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) has called on the public to be alert for bogus practitioners, saying this is crucial because people’s lives could be in danger when accepting help from an unqualified practitioner.
This is after two people were arrested in KwaMashu, north of Durban last week for issuing fraudulent medical certificates. The two suspects are expected to appear in court on Monday.
Police spokesperson Colonel Thembeka Mbele said KwaMashu detectives together with Crime Intelligence embarked on an intelligence operation in KwaMashu and surrounding areas and arrested the two, aged 38 and 47.
The police said the two friends who posed as doctors would appear in the Ntuzuma Magistrate’s Court on fraud charges.
“The police proceeded to KwaMashu P Section after receiving information about people who were issuing fraudulent medical certificates and were charging an amount of R50 per person.
“’One of the police officers posed as a customer and approached the two suspects who wasted no time and issued him the medical certificate.
“After acquiring their service, the officer introduced himself, searched the suspects and they were found in possession of several blank medical certificates from private doctors and public hospitals around the province. They were arrested and charged for fraud.”
The HPCSA urged the public to be vigilant.
“The HPCSA pleads with the public to be more vigilant of bogus practitioners and also those practitioners who are issuing fraudulent medical certificates as this endangers the lives of the public and has a negative impact on the employers’ productivity”, said Dr David Motau, the HPCSA chief executive.
He added that practising while not registered with council was a criminal offence. The public can verify a practitioner’s status by checking the HPCSA iRegister or calling the call centre on 012 338 9300.
The HPCSA is mandated to regulate the health professions in the country in aspects pertaining to education, training and registration, professional conduct and ethical behaviour, ensuring continuing professional development and fostering compliance with health-care standards.