Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Gov’t ‘can’t drop’ dental prakas

Gov’t ‘can’t drop’ dental prakas

Dentists perform check-ups on students’ teeth at Sonthormok High School in 2014 in Phnom Penh.
Dentists perform check-ups on students’ teeth at Sonthormok High School in 2014 in Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

Gov’t ‘can’t drop’ dental prakas

Ministry of Health officials on Saturday said they can’t terminate a controversial prakas allowing dental nurses to open their own clinics, and can only modify it – a response that disappointed leaders of dental or-ganisations who on Friday urged Health Minister Mam Bunheang to drop the directive.

Bunheang called a meeting on Saturday after the delivery of the letter, which was supported by several dental groups and requested that the ministry “terminate” the prakas for several reasons, including that dental nurses are not qualified to run their own clinics and that they would pose a risk to the public.

“We are not happy with the . . . answer that the ministry gave us. We still want it eliminated,” said Cheang Pengleang, a sixth-year dentistry student at the International University and president of the Cambodian Dental Students’ Association.

Several health officials couldn’t be reached for comment yesterday, but those in Saturday’s meeting said they were told that under the Cambodian law regarding medical staff, medical personnel have the “ability” or “right” to start their own clinic.

But according to the Law on Management of Private Medical, Paramedical and Medical Aide Practice, “only a dental doctor, dentist or a physician of oral specialty” can open a “private dental or oral consultation and treatment office”.

It was unclear what law the ministry was citing during the meeting.

Dr Solita Yam, president of the Cambodian Dental Association, on Friday said experts didn’t “accept” the prakas.

“The training [dental nurses] receive is not enough for them to open a private clinic,” she said.

Additional reporting by Kong Meta

MOST VIEWED

  • NY sisters inspired by Khmer heritage

    Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Cambodian-American sisters Edo and Eyen Chorm have always felt a deep affinity for their Cambodian heritage and roots. When the pair launched their own EdoEyen namesake jewellery brand in June, 2020, they leaned heavily into designs inspired by ancient Khmer

  • Schools drawn into Manet degree row

    Prime Minister Hun Sen stepped into the Hun Manet-Sam Rainsy war of words over the validity of Manet’s degree from the US Military Academy at West Point, set off by Rainsy’s claims that Manet had received a “second-class degree” or “honorary degree”. Hun

  • Cambodia records first Omicron community case

    The Ministry of Health on January 9 reported 30 new Covid-19 cases, 29 of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant. The ministry also reported 11 recoveries and no new deaths. Earlier on January 9, the ministry also announced that it had detected the Kingdom's

  • The effects of the USD interest rate hike on Cambodian economy

    Experts weigh in on the effect of a potential interest rate expansion by the US Federal Reserve on a highly dollarised Cambodia Anticipation of the US Federal Reserve’s interest rate hike in March is putting developing economies on edge, a recent blog post by

  • PM eyes Myanmar peace troika

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has suggested that ASEAN member states establish a tripartite committee or diplomatic troika consisting of representatives from Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia that would be tasked with mediating a ceasefire in Myanmar. The premier also requested that Nippon Foundation chairman Yohei Sasakawa

  • NagaWorld protest part of ‘conspiracy’

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Court and police held a joint-press conference on January 4 to clarify details concerning the arrest of nine former employees of the integrated resort NagaWorld and the charges brought against them, saying that the authorities had clear grounds for taking legal action.