NST reports prompted action
KUALA LUMPUR: The New Straits Times’ series of exposé on the flourishing illicit and dangerous business of “ozone therapy” prompted the authorities to tackle the issue once and for all.
The series splashed on the NST’s front page for several days, prompting many to come forward to the Health Ministry to lodge complaints against beauty parlours offering such services.
They were among “victims” who were lured by business operators driven solely by profit and had little regard for public safety and health.
Deputy Director-General of Health (Medical) Datuk Dr S. Jeyaindran told the NST that people had contacted the ministry to share stories on the adverse effects that they experienced after undergoing ozone therapy, following our exposé.
“We have received information on cases of complications and deaths as a result of the intrusive sessions.
“After reading the NST reports, many have called us. One of them was even prepared to come forward.”
He said the reports prompted several divisions under the ministry to work together to look for an amicable solution for the matter.
“We are thankful to the NST for highlighting this issue and working with the ministry to look deeper into it.
“Following that, several divisions under the ministry, namely the Medical Device Authority (MDA), National Pharmaceutical Regulatory Agency, Medical Practice Division and several others, met to discuss at length how we can regulate the practice.”
On the ministry’s decision to finally ban the practice, Dr Jeyaindran said the ministry had given operators ample time to prove the practice’s “effectiveness” and get legalised by registering with the MDA.
“We had announced on Jan 1 that we were giving them until mid-2017 to register, but none have come forward. Now, we hope they will voluntarily withdraw from the market before we start going after them from July 1. “The withdrawal period is also what the USFDA (United States Food and Drug Administration) did when they decided to ban the practice in the US.”
Datuk Dr S. Jeyaindran