Published on: Thursday, June 14, 2012
Kota Kinabalu: Traditional and complementary medical practitioners in the State are required to possess at least a Ministry of Health recognised skills certificate, said City Hall Director-General Datuk Yeo Boon Hai.
"I was made to understand that the Traditional and Complementary Medical Act will be debated in Parliament soon.
"Under the Act, practitioners of traditional and complementary medicines who are working in spas and reflexology centres such as masseuse, reflexologists and others need to have at least a skills certificate that is recognised by the Ministry of Health to carry out their practise," he said.
Yeo said this at the closing of a 'Spa and Reflexology Centre Towards Professionalism' seminar which was organised by the State Health Department's Traditional and Complementary Medicines Division and the Malaysian Wellness and Spa Association (MAWSPA) at a hotel in Warisan Square on Wednesday.
He said as the State is well known among tourists both locally and internationally and that spa and reflexology centres are among the premises favoured by tourists and locals during their holidays.
"I see that our spa and reflexology centres are still able to meet the current demand. However there is a need for us to increase the quality of the existing premises.
"I believe we have heard of the problem of unprofessional conduct by some spa and reflexology centres in the country.
"Such negative news and reports give a poor picture and image of the business and industry.
"Even though the problem is not too obvious in Kota Kinabalu, all parties involved should take the initiative and proactive steps to prevent the problem from spreading. As such the organisation of this seminar is timely."
Yeo said he was made to understand that the Department of Skills Development has also assisted to increase the number of skilled and qualified locals to carry out the service through training programmes.
"This effort will hopefully be able to reduce the demand for foreign practitioners which has been increasing in line with the development of the business since a few years back.
"Similarly the initiative and effort by the Ministry of Tourism to give a star rating to spa and reflexology centres. This activity has greatly assisted premises to improve their services in various aspects.
"I have also been made to understand the National Spa Council under the Ministry of Tourism has been set up to provide focus on this issue."
Yeo also highlighted the roles of Traditional and Complementary Medicines Association for Sabah (TCMAS) and Malaysia Wellness and Spa Association (MAWSPA) in providing advice and guidance for their members.
Also present at the event was City Hall Licensing Department Head Sairullizam Sukor, Sabah and Labuan Skills Development Department Director Syahrull Nizam bin Perdan, State Health Department's Traditional and Complementary Medicines Division Head Firdaus Abdul Rahman, Ministry of Tourism Sabah Office Tourism Licensing Unit Officer Zamri Othman, TCMAS President Datin Dorothea Justin Moduying and MAWSPA Sabah Chapter chief Eddie Abdullah.