Clos­ing down of cen­tres starts in 2 weeks

New Straits Times - - News -

MALACCA: The Health Min­istry will launch a na­tion­wide op­er­a­tion in two weeks to clamp down on those pro­vid­ing ozone beauty treat­ments to en­sure a to­tal ban of the ser­vices by July 1.

Its min­is­ter, Datuk Seri Dr S. Subra­ma­niam, said: “We have agen­cies au­tho­rised to carry out en­force­ment. We know who is do­ing it and we have the ev­i­dence to take ac­tion against the premises (op­er­a­tors) that of­fer such treat­ment,” he said at the 8th Health Clinic Ad­vi­sory Panel Na­tional Con­ven­tion here yes­ter­day.

Dr Subra­ma­niam said the blan­ket ban on ozone treat­ment had trig­gered a mixed re­ac­tion.

“Such ther­apy has been around for more than 10 years, but it is only now be­gin­ning to mush­room. Some are done in clin­ics and oth­ers by non-med­i­cal prac­ti­tion­ers in spas.

“There have been deaths (linked to ozone ther­apy). The min­istry is con­cerned as such cases are not re­ported to us.”

Dr Subra­ma­niam said the min­istry did not have a record of busi­nesses of­fer­ing ozone ther­apy as they were not reg­is­tered, but they in­cluded beauty par­lours, spas and clin­ics.

He said he would not con­sider ex­tend­ing the dead­line of the ban.

On another mat­ter, he said the Health Min­istry had no ju­ris­dic­tion to ver­ify the au­then­tic­ity of MyKad is­sued to for­eign work­ers.

“We do not have the fa­cil­i­ties to check the au­then­tic­ity of the MyKad, but if the is­sue gets worse, we will speak with the Na­tional Reg­is­tra­tion Depart­ment.

“Our stand is to of­fer treat­ment to a sick per­son, re­gard­less of who he is,” he said.

Mean­while, sev­eral ozone ther­apy cen­tres in the Klang Val­ley had stopped op­er­at­ing a day af­ter the Health Min­istry an­nounced the blan­ket ban.

Yes­ter­day, checks by the New Straits Times found one cen­tre in Ban­dar Pu­chong closed with­out no­tice. Another cen­tre that ad­ver­tised its premises on­line in Jalan PJS 11/28, Ban­dar Sun­way, did not ex­ist.

Phone calls were also made to the cen­tres. One in Ara Da­mansara asked to call back next week to set an ap­point­ment while oth­ers went unan­swered.

On Wed­nes­day, it was re­ported that Dr Subra­ma­niam had said that if such cen­tres did not shut down by July 1, their op­er­a­tors would be taken to court.

The di­rec­tive came a few months af­ter NST re­ported about un­reg­u­lated beauty par­lours of­fer­ing ozone ther­apy, which the op­er­a­tors said of­fered health ben­e­fits.

The NST Spe­cial Probes team, work­ing to­gether with the Na­tional Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal Reg­u­la­tory Agency had ex­posed the hir­ing of un­trained in­di­vid­u­als to hook the machines onto cus­tomers.

It had also found med­i­cal per­son­nel and oth­ers will­ing to in­ject un­known “beauty” con­coc­tions into cus­tomers for a fee.

PIC BY RASUL AZLI SA­MAD

Health Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Dr S. Subra­ma­nian (cen­tre) pre­sent­ing a mock cheque for RM2,500 to the win­ners, from Perlis, of an oral com­pe­ti­tion held dur­ing the 8th Health Clinic Ad­vi­sory Panel Na­tional Con­ven­tion in Malacca yes­ter­day.

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