SINGAPORE - General practitioner Jipson Quah, who was charged in court earlier this year for making false representations about Covid-19 vaccination information to the health authorities here, has been suspended from practising medicine.
New details about the allegations that were levelled against the 33-year-old by the Ministry of Health (MOH) were also revealed in a statement on Monday (March 28) by an interim orders committee appointed by the Singapore Medical Council (SMC). They included accusations that the doctor had injected patients with saline solution instead of a Covid-19 vaccine.
Quah is also said to have uploaded fake vaccination statuses for these patients to MOH's National Immunisation Registry and grossly overcharged the patients for "vaccinating" them.
The committee said the SMC received a complaint on Jan 23 from MOH about Quah, also alleging that he had facilitated the uploading of faulty Covid-19 pre-event testing results onto the MOH's Patient Risk Profile Portal.
These remote tests were not conducted according to prevailing regulations, the complaint said.
Quah is also accused of creating a fake patient account and uploading a false Covid-19 antigen rapid test result to MOH's portal for a person who had not been vaccinated against the coronavirus.
He allegedly gave this patient an exemption letter so that the patient could be exempted from vaccination-differentiated safe management measures.
MOH said in its complaint that Quah's actions carried public health consequences and showed his failure to maintain the highest standards of moral integrity and intellectual honesty, and to protect and promote the health of individuals and the community.
The SMC referred MOH's complaint to the interim orders committee to determine if Quah's registration should be suspended.
An independent complaints committee was also appointed to look into the complaint, and investigations are still ongoing.
The suspension of Quah's medical registration took effect from March 23 and will last 18 months, or until disciplinary proceedings against him conclude, whichever is sooner.
This was done in the public interest and necessary for the protection of the public, said the committee in a statement published on SMC's website.
It added that it had considered submissions from Quah's and the SMC's lawyers before making the decision.
Quah was arrested on Jan 21 along with his assistant, Thomas Chua Cheng Soon, 40, and Iris Koh, the founder of anti-vaccine group Healing the Divide.
He was charged in court, before being granted bail of $20,000 on Jan 31.
Preliminary investigations by the police revealed that Koh, 46, had allegedly referred clients to Quah and Chua.
According to court documents, Quah and Chua are said to have falsely represented to MOH that a woman named Mehrajunnisha was vaccinated with the Sinopharm vaccine, although she was not.
Four clinics owned or managed by Quah were issued notices of suspension and had their approvals to conduct rapid tests for Covid-19 revoked.
The clinics are Wan Medical Clinic in Bedok, Mayfair Medical Clinic in Woodlands, and Mayfair Medical Clinic (Chong Pang) and Ong Clinic & Surgery, both in Yishun.
Following his arrest, Quah was also suspended from his part-time position as a laboratory director at the clinical diagnostics lab of Diagnostics Development Hub, which is funded by the National Research Foundation and led by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research.
He was also placed on leave by Thermo Fisher Scientific, which owns biomedical company PPD Global Central Lab, where Quah was listed as a director.