Speech by DAP Organising Secretary, Mr. Lim Kit Siang, to the Sentul DAP Branch on Saturday, January 11, 1969 at 4.30p.m.
Call for Public Inquiry into the Scandalous service and standard of Kuala Lumpur General Hospital
Over the years and months, there have been mounting criticisms and complaints against the service and standard of the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital.
I have personally come across numerous complaints of patients who were ignored and neglected when they were hospitalized, leading to the deterioriation of their health and worsening of their illness. Many of them had to be re-hospitalised at the Assunta Hospital or University Teaching Hospital before they could recover their health.
The latest case concerned Mr. Chan Kok Sang, who was victim of a gang clash. He was admitted to the General Hospital on December 26 with grave injuries on both arms. As the KL General Hospital authorities did not seem to bother much about Mr. Chan’s grave injuries, Mr. Chan was transferred to the University Teaching Hospital staff commented that if there had been a further delay of another five hours, it would have been impossible to save Mr. Chan. In the event, both his arms had to be amputated.
The question is: What did the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital do in the four days between Dec. 26 – Dec. 30, which led to the worsening of Mr. Chan’s condition, even to endanger his life?
Unfortunately, Mr. Chan’s experience is not an isolated case. In fact, such cases are common with the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital.
The Kuala Lumpur General Hospital has ceased to inspire confidence among the public with its service and standard. Many dread to go to the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital, but were forced to go there because they are poor, and could not afford hospitalization costs in Assunta Hospital. As for the University Teaching Hospital, places are very limited.
The service and standard in the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital is really scandalous. I have called for re-organisation of the General Hospital to improve the efficiency, service, but the call has fallen on deaf ears.
The torrent of complaints and grievances against the service and standard of the KL General Hospital is so great that the Cabinet must intervene and hold a public inquiry for all those who have suffered at the hands of the KL General Hospital to publicise their complaints and experiences.
Such a public inquiry is the only way to restore confidence in the General Hospital of Kuala Lumpur, because it will be proof that the government wants to sweep away all the negligence, incompetence, sloppy service, and inefficiencies which have caused so much suffering, pain, and probably lives, over the years.
I do not believe that the government authorities are unaware of the scandalous state of affairs in the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital.
If the government still refuses to act, then it can only mean that the government is not interested whether the KL General Hospital becomes a KL Death House, so long as the Health Minister and all his officials get their salaries and quota of overseas trips.