Commissioner investigates general health service provider over alleged code breaches

news
26 November 2020

The Health Complaints Commissioner has commenced an investigation into a general health service provider operating in Albert Park, Melbourne.

The provider, Natalie Kringoudis, like all general health service providers, is subject to the Code of Conduct under the Health Complaints Act 2016.

To ensure the public’s safety while the investigation is conducted, Health Complaints Commissioner Karen Cusack has issued an Interim Prohibition Order (IPO) banning Ms Kringoudis from advertising, offering or providing any general health service, paid or otherwise, in a clinical or non-clinical capacity which involves or is, in any way, related to:

  • Chinese medicine, Chinese herbal medicine,
  • Chinese herbal dispensing,
  • acupuncture,
  • the treatment of mental health disorders, or emotional disorders.

Ms Kringoudis must display a copy of the interim prohibition order on her business website and at the business premises.

The IPO is available at: hcc.vic.gov.au/prohibition-orders-warnings/prohibition-orders

“The safety of Victorians is my number one priority and, as such, I believe it is necessary to impose this interim ban while our investigation is conducted to avoid a serious risk to the health, safety and welfare of the Victorian public,” Commissioner Cusack said.

“Interim prohibition orders are important powers for the Commissioner where there is a serious risk to the health, safety or welfare of the public and prohibiting all or part of the general health service is necessary to avoid that risk.  An interim prohibition order can be made for up to 12 weeks.”

“All general health service providers must observe the code of conduct for general health services set out in the Health Complaints Act 2016 (the Code), which sets the minimum legal standards to support the provision of safe and ethical health care in Victoria,” Ms Cusack said.

“It is important the public has confidence in health service providers and that members of the public raise any concerns they might have with us.

“My office continues to investigate those providers who pose a risk to the public and we will not hesitate to take action against them if they are found to have breached the Code of Conduct.”

“All Victorians deserve safe and ethical healthcare from every health service they access. The Code is in place to protect Victorians and I will not tolerate general health service providers who breach it,” Ms Cusack said.

“Significant penalties apply under the Health Complaints Act 2016 for breaching interim and permanent prohibition orders, including fines, a term of imprisonment or both.”

“I would encourage any person who is concerned about the care they may have received from Ms Kringoudis, or any health service provider, to contact my office on 1300 582 113, or via our online complaint form at hcc.vic.gov.au/make-complaint."