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SFH begins visit to London (with photos)

     The Secretary for Food and Health, Dr Ko Wing-man, began his two-day visit to London, the United Kingdom (UK), by meeting with the Chief Executive of the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care, Mr Harry Cayton, and the Authority's Director of Standard and Policy, Ms Christine Braithwaite, this morning (May 16, London time).

     Overseeing statutory bodies that regulate health and social care professionals in the UK, the Authority sets standards for organisations holding voluntary registers for health and social care occupations and accredits those that meet them. It monitors policy developments in the UK and internationally, and provides advice on issues relating to professional standards in health and social care.

     In the afternoon, Dr Ko met the Chairman of the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC), Mr John Lant, the Chief Executive of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), Sir Andrew Dillon, and the Director of Centre for Public Health Excellence of NICE, Professor Mike Kelly, to exchange views on areas including regulation of health-care facilities, manpower planning and professional development, development of clinical guidelines, as well as other health and medical issues on both sides.

     The CNHC, with government support, regulates complementary therapies such as aromatherapy, healing, hypnotherapy, massage therapy, naturopathy, nutritional therapy, reflexology, shiatsu, sports therapy and yoga therapy. The NICE is an independent organisation under the UK's public health-care system, providing guidance on quality standards for illness treatment and prevention.

     During the meetings, Dr Ko said that the Hong Kong Government established the Steering Committee on Review of the Regulation of Private Healthcare Facilities in October last year with an aim of strengthening regulatory control of private health-care facilities in order to safeguard people's health.

     The Hong Kong Government would take the opportunity to learn more and make reference to the UK's experience in regulating complementary therapies and ways to enhance the standard of medical services, he said.

     Dr Ko will call on the Care Quality Commission and the National Health Service tomorrow (May 17, London time) before departing for Germany to visit a Chinese medicine clinic in Kotzting on May 18 (Germany time). He will attend the 66th World Health Assembly of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, on May 20 (Geneva time).

Ends/Friday, May 17, 2013
Issued at HKT 06:47


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