Health Minister warns centres that issue bogus medical certificates

By Don Asoka Wijewardena

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena yesterday warned unscrupulous medical centres not to issue false medical certificates to would be Sri Lankan migrant workers any longer. Stern action against such centres would be taken and if found guilty of flouting the law. The licenses of such centres would be cancelled and the owners would be prosecuted.

Minister Sirisena told ‘The Island’ that many Sri Lankans, especially housemaids, technicians, carpenters and unskilled workers were leaving the country to West Asian countries for various types of jobs. A study carried out by the Health Ministry had revealed that a majority of medical certificates issuing centres were issuing bogus medical certificates to migrant workers for money.

He pointed out that the migrant workers might suffer from various infectious diseases, but the centres were issuing certificates that they were free from diseases. "What will happen is that when such Sri Lankan migrant workers went to foreign countries, they will develop some health complications and inform their relatives to get them down to Sri Lanka. Then the government has to spend a great deal of money to get them down. In fact they are not aware of the gravity of the situation. I called the owners of private medical certificates issuing centres and warned them not issue any certificate to any Sri Lankan who is not medically fit. If they would continue to do so I have no alternative but to prosecute them and cancel their licenses immediately," Minister Sirisena stressed.

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