Sabah to look into health card forgery after arrest of govt medical assistant

Sabah Health and Well-being Minister Frankie Poon

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah health and well-being ministry will launch an investigation into possible health card abuse following the arrest of a government medical assistant on suspicion of supplying forged health cards to food handlers.

Its minister Frankie Poon told reporters at his office here today:
“We are very concerned about the issuance of these forged cards as it affects the health of consumers at all the eateries. If it is true, we need to ensure this kind of thing doesn’t happen again.”

He said the case was still under police investigation.

A 37-year-old medical assistant was arrested on July 10 on suspicion of forging health cards in Ranau, about 110km from here, since 2014.

The suspect is believed to have supplied the cards to restaurant workers and those operating at school canteens after forging doctors’ signatures and stamping doctors names and the government hospital’s stamp on the cards.

Police said the fraud came to light after a health department officer found out about the fake cards while checking on a food poisoning complaint at a secondary school in Ranau last month.

According to police the eatery workers had paid RM100 each for the cards but did not go through the mandatory health checks in order to obtain the health certificate. Police are still trying to ascertain how many cards the suspect had issued.

Sabah health director Dr Christina Rundi said a probe would be conducted, adding: “But we will not comment openly because it is still under police investigations.”