Doc told to shut practice

2016-03-31 11:39
The practice of well-known Comrades doctor Jeremy Boulter. The HPCSA claims that Boulter has not paid his annual fees and as a result has been running his practice illegally for a number of years.

The practice of well-known Comrades doctor Jeremy Boulter. The HPCSA claims that Boulter has not paid his annual fees and as a result has been running his practice illegally for a number of years. (Chelsea Pieterse, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - The Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) has instructed Comrades Marathon doctor and Richmond district surgeon Jeremy Boulter to shut down his practice.

Boulter, well-known for his role as the chief medic in charge of the Comrades medical tent, has allegedly been practising illegally as a doctor for the past 14 years.

Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Sergeant Mthokozisi Ngobese said a case of fraud had been opened by the HPCSA against Boulter for not paying his fees since 2009.

A source said Boulter had not paid fees since 2002, then apparently paid a sum to the HPCSA in 2009, but failed to pay fees again from 2009.

Ngobese said no arrests had been made, but Boulter was not allowed to practise medicine until he is registered with the council.

The source said Boulter was removed from the HPCSA register in 2002 when he failed to pay the annual fee.

To practise as a doctor in South Africa, one must belong to the council, or else work in the medical field is illegal.

HPCSA spokesperson Daphney Chuma said she would respond today.

It is believed that investigations into Boulter began in February this year, when the Labour Department reported the issue to the HPCSA.

It is alleged that Boulter was told to shut down his practice then. However, when police, accompanied by a member of the HPCSA inspectorate, visited his rooms yesterday, Boulter was still seeing patients.

As the Richmond district surgeon, Boulter has been performing post-mortems for the police as well as testing drunk drivers and drug users without being registered with the HPCSA.

Boulter, well-known and liked in the Richmond community, was visibly stressed and upset as he reversed out of the gates of his house, nestled among leafy trees and plants, yesterday.

With his hands gripping the steering wheel, Boulter grimly confirmed that he was chief medic for the Comrades, saying he could not comment on the investigation.

“I can’t talk to you right now about it,” he said.

Later, in a phone call to The Witness, Boulter said he was not prepared to discuss the allegations but did not think Comrades “deserved to be dragged through the mud”.

“I am the co-ordinator of the medical tent. I do not actually treat anyone,” he said.

“Comrades is a big organisation and it does not deserve to be involved in this.”

Comrades Ultra Marathon spokesperson Delaine Cools said Boulter had been with the Comrades medical team for over 30 years.

She said the marathon organisers were unaware of the allegations and could not comment.


Read more on:    hpcsa  |  pietermaritzburg  |  health  |  doctor

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