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Woman convicted for practice of Chinese medicine without registration

     A 51-year-old woman was convicted and fined $5,000 at Kwun Tong Magistrates' Courts today (March 9) for the charge of practice of Chinese medicine without registration.

     A beauty centre located at 912-914 Cheung Sha Wan Road, Kowloon, was raided by the Police and the Department of Health (DH) in a joint operation on July 29 last year. Investigation found that the woman provided cupping therapy at the premises. She was arrested on-site for suspected illegal practice of Chinese medicine.
     Cupping is a therapeutic method involving the application of suction by placing a cup or jar that has been vacuumised (usually by fire) onto the affected or acupuncture points of the body surface. Based on the doctrine of meridians of traditional Chinese medicine, cupping can activate the regulating function of the body to improve and rectify the disturbance and dysfunction of certain organs in the body. Improper application of cupping could lead to burns.

     "The DH is very concerned about the potential risks and complications of Chinese medicine-related beauty services provided by persons not qualified to practise Chinese medicine," a spokesman for the DH said.

     "According to section 108 of the Chinese Medicine Ordinance (Cap 549), any person who practises Chinese medicine while not being a registered Chinese medicine practitioner or listed Chinese medicine practitioner commits a criminal offence. The maximum penalty of the offence is a fine of $100,000 and three years' imprisonment," the spokesman explained.

     Members of the public are strongly reminded that procedures conducted at beauty centres such as acupuncture and cupping may carry risks. These procedures require a client's informed choice and potential users are advised to discuss with health-care professionals about the benefits and risks of such procedures and the full details of the procedure before making a decision.

Ends/Monday, March 9, 2015
Issued at HKT 20:22


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