The Doctors Syndicate received a complaint against the health ministry from El Nadeem Centre for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence on Thursday.
The centre stated in its complaint that the ministry’s attempts to shut down El Nadeem are illegal, according to Law 153/2004. According to Article 11 of the law, the entity should be informed of the violations 30 days in advance of shutting it down, which did not officially take place in El Nadeem’s case.
The complaint further referenced Article 16 of the same law, which stipulates that closures are temporary until violations are settled, whereas permanent closures should be backed with a court decision.
In response to the complaint, the syndicate called on the health ministry to abide by the legal procedures of warning any institutions before taking action against them. It also called on the ministry to focus its supervisory efforts on the unlicensed health care facilities that endanger the lives of citizens.
The Health Ministry declared Tuesday that it will take legal action against El Nadeem Centre for refusing to follow the closure order. The ministry said it previously sent a letter to centre about its violations, according to ministry spokesperson Khaled Megahed.
This comes amid an escalating dispute between the Doctors Syndicate and the health ministry which dates back to the drafting of the health insurance law in 2015. The conflict peaked after the recent attack on two doctors in the Matariya Teaching Hospital, prompting the syndicate to hold a historic assembly in mid-February.
The assembly resulted in a number of challenging decisions, including the referral of Minister of Health Ahmed Emad El-Din to a disciplinary committee in his capacity as a syndicate member, as well as the decision to provide free-of-charge medical treatment in public hospitals.
A new assembly is scheduled to be held on Friday to follow up on the previous decisions passed by the assembly, and to demand the referral of police officers accused of attacking the Matariya doctors to trial.
More attacks against doctors have followed the Matariya incident, pushing the syndicate to call for legislative reform with harsh penalties for attacking doctors or healthcare facilities.
On Wednesday, the syndicate reported an assault by a patient’s relative on a doctor in the EgyptAir hospital.