Chief Executive Carrie Lam says the Medical Council’s latest proposal to introduce overseas specialists to Hong Kong “gives a bad impression”, because it apparently favours those who opt to work for the Hospital Authority.
According to media reports, an internship requirement can be waived if overseas specialists undertake to serve at the Hospital Authority, the Department of Health, or two medical schools in the city for between three to four years – with the terms at the Hospital Authority being least stringent.
Lam said on Saturday that she doesn’t want doctors working at the Department of Health to feel they are inferior to their counterparts at the Hospital Authority, adding she hopes the Medical Council will adjust its proposal before putting it to vote on May 8.
Lam said she will ask the Secretary for Health, Sophia Chan, to lobby stakeholders to give equal treatment for all outside specialists to serve in the public healthcare system.
Lam also expressed concerns that the proposal only seeks to introduce specialists, noting there's a shortage of front line doctors as well.
The Medical Council had recently rejected several proposals to ease registration requirements, but its chairman Joseph Lau arranged another round of voting in a bid to ease the severe staff shortage in public hospitals.
But the vice president of the Medical Association, which is one of the groups behind the new proposal, disagreed with the CE.
Dr David Lam said given the different job nature, specialists working for the Department of Health will take longer to acquire the same level of clinical experience as their counterparts in the Hospital Authority.
Last updated: 2019-04-20 HKT 16:13