PETALING JAYA - Preliminary investigation confirmed that the report about the baby swapping incident in Kedah is true and action will be taken against the hospital responsible once the probe is completed, the Health Ministry revealed.
Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said the ministry would take the necessary action against the hospital as stipulated in the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998.
"Although the private hospital has taken steps to solve the baby swapping issue, the ministry takes this seriously," he said on his website on Friday night.
It was reported that two couples walked away with each other's baby girl after a mix-up at a private hospital in Kedah.
One of the couples realised the mistake when they checked the leg tag of the infant while on their way home to Yan, about 60km away, after leaving Hospital Pusat Rawatan Mahsuri in Bandar Darulaman on Wednesday afternoon.
Dr Hisham said preliminary investigation found that the incident reported was true and there were weaknesses in baby handling at the ward and the discharge procedure was not adhered to.
"The incident should not have happened at any private health facilities licensed under the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act 1998 because the Act and its regulations (2006) have provided for the legal requirement on patient identification," he said.
"Although the hospital adhered to the procedures of identifying mothers and babies, the hospital staff failed to follow the work procedures which had been set," he said.