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Surgeon who Refused to Issue Sick Leave Faces Prosecution

As a worker, we are all entitled to rights and benefits that are secured and observed by the State, no matter where we are in the world. Failure by authorities or by employers to recognize this will put them liable to the law.

And while the specifics may vary from one place to another, the bottom line is that every working individual whether citizen or expat must be able to enjoy their rights as workers as sanctioned by the law, otherwise, workers can express their grievances and complaints in relation to their work.

Doctor Who Did Not Issue Sick Leave Calls for Appeal on Court

An orthopaedic surgeon who was found guilty of professional misconduct by a disciplinary tribunal for authorizing a migrant worker ‘fit for work’ one day after completion of his collarbone surgery has appealed against his conviction, as shared in a report by the Straits Times.

Dr Kevin Yip Man Hing did not issue any sick leave to the 47-year old construction worker, other than the two days spent by the patient at the hospital for his surgery.

Instead, the surgeon had certified the Chinese migrant worker to be fit for “light duties” upon discharge, as well as on two separate subsequent post-operative visits.

Raising his appeal at the Court of Three Judges last January 31, Dr Yip expressed through his lawyer, that the patient had agreed to return to work and that it was appropriate to allow him light activities as the benefits of being mobile early facilitated rehabilitation to begin sooner.

Upon investigation regarding the incident as raised to the Singapore Medical Council (SMC) by migrant worker rights group Humanitarian Organisation for Migration Economics (Home), Dr. Yip, 57, was sentenced to a five-month suspension since last year after discovering that he has “failed to ensure that adequate sick leave was given to (the patient) in light of his condition and the nature of his occupation”.

During Dr Yip’s disciplinary inquiry, a number of experts testified about the necessary length of medical leave that was appropriate to the patient and his condition.

After raising Dr Yip’s appeal before court, a decision is expected to be released at a later date.