Public Health Perm-Sec threatened with a malfeasance lawsuit

The Khon Kaen Provincial Hospital Director has threatened to sue Public Health Permanent Secretary, Dr. Sukhum Kanchanapimai, after he was transferred to Chanthaburi province over alleged corruption in connection with donations to the Hospital Development Fund.

Speaking to the media, in front of his medical staff at Khon Kaen Hospital at noon today (Thursday), Dr. Charnchai Chanvorachaikul categorically denied the graft allegation, which was the subject of an anonymous letter sent to the permanent secretary.

He said that all the public donations to, and spending of the hospital development fund, including the 143 million baht raised by famous rocker Toon Body Slam, were accountable and approved by the hospital’s board and they can be checked any time.

Regarding the 5% commission granted by drug companies to hospitals for drug procurement, Dr. Charnchai said that, two years ago, the Cabinet issued an order forbidding all hospitals to receive any commission from pharmaceutical companies.

He reiterated that he had never received any financial reward or commission from drug companies, as alleged, and that he had already testified to the Public Health Ministry’s fact finding committee on January 7th.

He questioned the Permanent Secretary’s order transferring him to Chanthaburi province, despite the fact that the probe against him has not yet begun.

According to the transfer order, Dr. Charnchai will be succeeded by Dr. Kriangsak Watcharanukulkiat, director of Pokklao Hospital in Chanthaburi province.

Dr. Charnchai also denied an allegation that he had threatened some witnesses, noting that he didn’t know who the witnesses are, so could not threaten them, adding that he has consulted his lawyer about filing a malfeasance lawsuit against Dr. Sukhum.

About two years ago, Dr. Sukhum ordered the Dr. Charnchai and Dr. Kriangsak to swap positions, but the order was overruled by then Public Health Minister Dr. Piyasakol Sakonsattayathorn.

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