Support for Comrades doc

2016-04-01 11:00
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 - Support for Comrades Marathon chief medic and Richmond district surgeon Dr Jeremy Boulter has poured in after his practice was shut down on Wednesday.

The Health Professionals Council of South Africa (HPCSA) launched an investigation into Boulter in February this year after members of the public reported that Boulter had allegedly been illegally practising as a doctor for the last 14 years.

The HPCSA alleged that Boulter’s HPCSA licence was erased after he failed to pay for it in 2002.

Medical practitioners are not allowed to practise medicine if they are not registered on the HPCSA roll.

The Richmond community banded together yesterday in support of Boulter on the Richmond South Africa KZN community news, info and classifieds page on Facebook.

Facebook user and Richmond local Julie Tovey said Boulter was a “wonderful doctor” who the community would continue to support.

“He is one of the few who will still come out to your house in the middle of the night. I will still continue to support this great doctor,” she said.

“Dr Boulter helped me, didn’t charge me and helped me get my medication from the clinic as I am not on medical aid,” said Facebook user Bronwen Marriott.

“If it weren’t for him I would not be receiving medication at all. Definitely one of the doctors that care,” she said.

Richmond local Ricky Jugree wrote in to The Witness yesterday and said Boulter had been a pillar of the Richmond community for many years.

“Many doctors have come and gone just to make a few bob but Dr Boulter is not like that,” said Jugree.

“He is dedicated to his patients and his job. He follows up on his patients and takes his work seriously.”

He said Boulter was a doctor who did not buy his way up or harm anyone and that the community would stand with him.

Comrades Marathon Association chairperson Macdonald Chitja said the matter was to be investigated.

“The matter was brought to our attention on Wednesday and we were not aware of the allegations previously,” he said.

“The association will discuss the issue and then take a decision on it,” he said.

HPCSA spokesperson Priscilla Sekhonyana said yesterday that a criminal case had been opened with the Richmond police station on Wednesday.

“Police are still conducting their own investigations and the practitioner is not yet arrested,” said Sekhonyana.

“Section 39 and 40 of the Health Professions Act 56 of 1974 prescribes that all healthcare practitioners must register with the HPCSA for them to practise their profession in the country.

“The act further states that it is illegal for practitioners to practice without being registered with the HPCSA. This in effect, means that Dr Boulter has been practising illegally since 2002,” she said.

As the district surgeon, Boulter had performed post-mortems and blood tests of drunk drivers and drug users for the police.

Pietermaritzburg police spokesperson Sergeant Mthokozisi Ngobese said the fact that Boulter had been practising without a licence for 14 years would not affect the work he had done with the police in the past.

“Boulter remains a professional, the problem is that he is not registered.

“The police will not work with Boulter until he has been registered,” said Ngobese.

• chelsea.pieterse@witness.co.za

Read more on:    hpcsa  |  pietermaritzburg  |  health  |  medical

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