Suspended British doctor’s work at Karapitiya resumes

Published : 9:10 am  April 20, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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By Kalathma Jayawardhane and Thilanka Kanakarathne   

The temporary ban imposed on a surgeon from England at the Karapitiya Hospital preventing him from conducting surgeries, was lifted last evening on a recommendation made by the Sri Lanka Medical Council (SLMC), Karapitiya Hospital Director Dr. Jayampathy Senanayake said.


He claimed the British doctor was suspended from performing heart surgeries pending a determination from the SLMC on his practising licence. 

Dr. Senanayake told Daily Mirror that the issue had been taken up after several doctors attached to the Government Medical Officers’ Association (GMOA) observed that the British doctor did not have a licence to practise in the United Kingdom (UK) as it needed to be renewed from time to time.   

However, Dr. Senanayaka explained that the said doctor had since obtained SLMC permission to perform surgeries in Sri Lanka and could resume his duties henceforth and added  that the SLMC had the sole authority to decide on it.   

“The GMOA were threatening to resort to trade union action if the authorities failed to take action against this doctor. In the UK, it is necessary for doctors to be registered with their Medical Council. There is also a practising licence which needs to be renewed periodically. However, unlike in the UK, only the SLMC’s certification is needed to practise medicine in Sri Lanka,” he said. “Another claim of the GMOA is that the said British doctor was too old,” he added.   
Meanwhile, an official of the Health Ministry claimed that the elderly British doctor was performing heart surgeries, some involving children.   

GMOA Secretary Dr. Haritha Aluthge told Daily Mirror that when they initially inquired about the qualifications of this doctor, they found that he only had the certification of the General Medical Council (GMC) in UK and not practising rights. “He was stripped of the right to practise medicine in the UK in 2015 due to some unknown reason and he concealed the fact when he submitted his documents to the SLMC to get registered. This 67-year-old British Cardiothoracic surgeon started working at the Karapitiya Teaching Hospital in 2016,” he said.   

He said the GMOA was waiting for the determination of the inquiry with regard to this matter and added that it was not appropriate to let a doctor who does not have practising rights in his own country to practise medicine here.