‘Inspection carried out on clinic legally sound’
KUALA LUMPUR: The inspection on a dental clinic where Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s son-in-law died while receiving treatment last year was carried out under Section 88 of the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998, the Sessions Court heard yesterday.
Health Minister’s Office principal assistant director Dr Mohamed Ahsan Mohamed Ismail, who led a group in the investigation team, said they had only exercised the power of inspector to enter and inspect Imperial Dental Specialist Centre in Bangsar provided in the section under Part 16 of the act.
“We were not there to conduct a raid, but to obtain information on the case of a patient who died there during treatment,” the witness said while being cross-examined by defence counsel Sreekant Pillai.
The third prosecution witness was testifying on the second day of the trial of the clinic, which was charged with nine counts relating to Datuk Syed Alman Zain Syed Alwi’s death.
Dr Ahsan also testified that the officers in the investigation team, which was divided into groups A, B and C, did not seize any sample, medication or document from the clinic, but only took pictures of them.
“We also used the power under Section 88 to get statements from the staff and examine the place for inspection purposes.”
When asked by Sreekant on the reports that he prepared for the case, Dr Ahsan said he handed a preliminary report on June 3 last year and a full report between June 19 and 20 last year to Putrajaya Private Medical Practice Control Section (CKAPS) investigation officer Dr Siti Khadijah Hawari.
Sreekant: Did you make any more visits to the premises before handing over the full report?
Dr Ahsan: No, the only visit was on June 2, 2016.
Sreekant: Do you agree that if you had exercised the full power under Part 16 from Section 87 (appointment of inspectors) to
Section 98 (Production of official identification card or badge), you could have obtained the documents and get a complete picture to produce a complete report? Dr Ahsan: I do not agree.
Sreekant: You said you could obtain the documents if you exercise the full power under Part 16 to seize it?
Dr Ahsan: Yes, but I did not use
Sreekant: I’m putting to you that your full report is not complete as you did not exercise full power under Part 16?
Dr Ahsan: I do not agree. During re-examination by deputy public prosecutor Jaizah Jaafar Sidek, Dr Ahsan said the information and photographs from the premises during their inspection on June 2 was sufficient in producing a complete report.
Trial continues tomorrow before judge Harmi Thamri Mohamad @ Shahrudin.
On Monday, the court was told that the investigation team formed to investigate Imperial Dental Specialist Centre was divided into three groups — A, B, and C — each with different tasks.
Group A was tasked with interviewing the staff involved in the patient’s treatment and checking the documents involved. Group B was tasked with checking the equipment and emergency medication used for the patient’s treatment, while group C had to check the status of the premises and examine its floor plan.
Dr Ahsan had told the court on Monday that 13 personnel from CKAPS, the Medical Practice Control Unit and a dental surgery specialist from Sungai Buloh Hospital were involved.
On Aug 12 last year, the clinic was charged with nine counts, including purportedly allowing Dr Ting Teck Chin, who is not a qualified anaesthesiologist, to administer anaesthesia on Syed Alman.
Syed Alman, 44, died during dental surgery at the dental clinic on June 1 last year.
Dr Ting, 36, was charged separately with causing the death of Syed Alman while undergoing dental treatment.