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Fake Degrees vs Unrecognised Doctors – Here’s A Second Letter From Frustrated Doctors To Mahathir’s Minister



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Mar 04 2019
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Much has been said about false degrees in the past weeks. More than a handful of politicians have been caught with their pants down in this regard. Coming from a grouping of political parties that cried out for accountability and transparency during the last election, this was shocking. The very fact that those politicians are allowed to carry on with the gross injustice swept under the carpet, has caused the common man to loose trust in our politicians just after a fiasco where campaign promises were deemed breakable.

 

Now, allow me to turn your attention to another group of people who have worked hard for nearly 5 to 6 years of their life, on their own budget and rejected by the very authorities who claim that everyone should be equal. I’m emphasising on those who are claimed by the authorities as Unrecognised Doctors. The only reason their degrees are unrecognised is because they fit an advanced degree within the means of their buying power and shopped around and went for that which was cheapest.

 

Was that so wrong? Unfortunately in Malaysia where the crony class controls nearly everything, that was a terrible sin for which they should be termed dangerous and half-baked. They are fully graduated from their universities and are on the same standards as those who graduated in the respective countries of their study. But here in Malaysia, unless the MMC says their university is recognised, they are refused entry to even be houseman.

Malaysian Medical Council

In other countries, when you sit for an entrance exam, you are allowed to become medical officers. Only in Malaysia do they put such a hurdle for you just to become a houseman where you are basically still a student doctor and the kuli of the ward. You can’t make any decisions on your own and have pre, mid and post tests in the department. This is not to mention that you have to make presentations etc.

 

Thus, this is just an extension of still being a medical student no matter your graduation. But, under the guise of a lack of doctors in the past, this system was perpetuated so the common folk will think that their doctors were skilled. Seeing how lacking some doctors from recognised institutions are, this is still a good yard stick for all doctors who wish to practice in Malaysia.

 

But why are doctors from unrecognised universities purposely marked out since 1992 to sit for a qualifying exam? If it was the failure of the MMC to send a team to do the recognition process due to lack of funds, why single out these doctors? And don’t be under false pretensions that the process of recognition was done above board even when it was attempted.

Doctor Housemanship - Problems

No process in Malaysia is idiot proof. In the past, no less than a senior official from MMC was caught with his hands in the cookie jar during this process. There were too many points of contention till 30 doctors decided to take the matter to court in 2004 but we now know the courts were subservient to the old BN regime from the explosive press releases by a retired judge this past month.

 

Even during exams, these doctors are earmarked for failure especially previously when the exams were held in various public universities with medical faculties. They were used as the failure rate to pass off the local students who had failed the main exams. Having undergone all that, many doctors from unrecognised colleges refuse to partake in this farce of an exam even when it is conducted by MMC now.

 

As I pointed out in my first letter, the MMC is an archaic institution as was claimed by none other than a previous health minister. So why is this undemocratic institution not forced to revamp but allowed to continue dictating policy? How can an institution where two-thirds of the members are not elected but just appointed by the local universities; be impartial to the plight of doctors from other established universities from other countries?

Health Minister Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad

The Health Minister was very quick to get laws changed and to put in place a ban for smoking in food outlets. Why isn’t the discriminative law about unrecognised doctors also removed? Everyone should be treated equally. Either all are made to undergo an entrance exam including even the local university students such as how it’s done in the US and Canada; or all are allowed to start housemanship.

 

It is during housemanship that every doctor picks up the pace and is prepared to serve the Malaysian public. So stop putting a hindrance to doctors joining housemanship. Every Malaysian should be welcomed to join the service and allowed to prove themselves.

 

There are so called unrecognised doctors who have done stringent exams like the Australian Medical Council, PLAB (UK), USMLE (US) etc. However, even these are unacceptable in Malaysia and the doctors are still judged on their basic degree which MMC refuses to accept. I can assure you that even our recognised doctors will find it difficult to pass those exams.

Australian Medical Council AMC

But even after passing it, Malaysia refuses to accept these doctors just because their basic degree is deemed dangerous to MMC. But it’s no problem accepting Australian and UK doctors who are on par with those who passed these exams just because they went there as government students on the tax payer’s bailout and due to our government’s goodwill.

 

Previously, there were doctors who didn’t make the cut during the qualifying exams in all attempts. Over night they were allowed to join housemanship when the date of the recognition of their university was pre-dated. These doctors proved themselves and today they are all practicing. It was just a wave of the pen and they were taken in.

 

So why can’t with the very same wave of the pen, the Medical Act regarding unrecognised doctors be made redundant and all Malaysians be treated equally? Isn’t this what Malaysia Baru is all about? Is this so hard for the Pakatan government to do?

Malaysian Medical Doctor - Graduates

Stop wasting the lives of these doctors. They have worked very hard for their degrees. They are not dubious doctors. If politicians with dubious degrees can be allowed to serve as it’s now claimed that the degrees are irrelevant in their day to day activities; why can’t doctors who have degrees from reputable institutions from other countries also be allowed to join housemanship and be given a chance to prove themselves?

 

We don’t need MMC’s list of universities anymore. This is an old fashioned method which was set up by cronies. A more transparent way is to allow all to serve and prove themselves knowing that if they can’t make the cut during housemanship, they can never practice to serve the Malaysian public. There is nothing like that realisation to motivate a young doctor to prove himself during housemanship.

 

Frustrated Doctor.

 

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