Lawyers for jailed PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim insist that the politician is not getting the urgent medical attention he needs, despite the Health Ministry claiming that 17 experts are looking after him.
No MRI has been carried out to ascertain the condition of his shoulder in the past three months while he has only received physiotherapy once a month, they said in a statement.
“He should be taken several times a week to the hospital for intensive physiotherapy as recommended by the orthopaedic specialist,” the lawyers said.
“Now, with his worsening condition, surgery has become essential.”
They also questioned why the ministry is only now allowing a second opinion by an orthopaedic specialist when requests were made months ago.
The statement was jointly issued by Sivarasa Rasiah, N Surendran and Latheefa Koya.
Anwar’s family said he is suffering from a shoulder injury, sustained prior to his jailing in February, which required urgent surgery.
They said Anwar is now in constant pain as the injury has worsened while in prison, but
Health Ministry experts examining him only prescribed physiotherapy and analgesics.
'Remove Dr Jeyaindran'
The family earlier also threatened to file a malpractice complaint against specialist Dr S Jeyaindran for not providing the urgent treatment required.
The lawyers said while there are 17 experts involved, it does not change the fact that Jeyaindran is the person in charge.
They reiterated the family’s call for him to be removed from the team, given that he was a prosecution witness in Anwar’s sodomy case.
“What is equally worrying is that the minister in charge has again appointed Dr Jeyaindran to examine Anwar now, when he is the very the same physician consultant who was involved in treating Anwar in 2003 during his then imprisonment.
“Even back then, Anwar had complained about the lack of adequate medical treatment for his back problem.
“Those complaints were very real because DSAI was flown immediately to Munich for complex surgery on his back upon his release in September 2004,” they said.
In a statement late last Saturday, Health Ministry director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah said Anwar is managed by a team of 17 private and public health professionals from eight medical disciplines.
“All clinical management decisions by the Panel of Experts are made collectively, professionally, transparently and without bias.
“The clinical experts have not denied any treatment and similar to other patients, the treatment plan is reviewed on a regular basis according to the needs of the case,” Noor Hashim said.
He said healthcare providers have a high level of professionalism and he also reminded all doctors to take heed of the Hippocratic Oath to give quality care and service to all patients.