Fri, Jan 29, 2010 - Page 2 News List

Health authorities summon doctor over alleged leak

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taichung City Government’s Department of Health yesterday said doctor Chang Chi-chung would be summoned on Feb. 5 to determine whether he divulged details of a celebrity patient’s medical history in violation of the Physician’s Act.

The celebrity in question was TV hostess Li Ching.

Born a man, Li had a sex change operation 29 years ago in Singapore.

The Chinese-language Next Magazine said in its latest edition that Chang had revealed details of Li’s medical history in a physician’s periodical published on Wednesday.

Li’s lawyer Lee Wen-chung said Li was very upset and could sue Chang.

Medical Affairs Division Deputy Director-General Wang Tsung-hsi said Chang’s behavior may have violated Article 72 of the Physician’s Act, barring health workers from leaking a patient’s medical history.

Violators can be fined between NT$50,000 and NT$250,000 and have their license suspended.

If prosecutors charge Chang under Article 23 of the Physician’s Act, Wang said, the owner of the hospital where Chang works may also be fined between NT$20,000 and NT$100,000. If prosecutors charge him under Article 316 of the Criminal Code, Chang could face up to one year in prison and a fine of up to NT$50,000.

“We have requested that the Taichung City Government Department of Health handle the case,” she said.

In response, Chang said had had only shared experience with fellow professionals.

“Li’s father and I are good friends and I have looked after her ever since the surgery. Why would I do something like this to her on purpose?” he said.

Chang said the Taichung’s Physician Association periodical was not public and was only for association members. However, the article was available on the association’s Web site until it was removed on Wednesday night.

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