Hong Kong doctor arrested for using paid study leave to take three-day holiday abroad

The 26-year-old doctor from Prince of Wales Hospital allegedly used fake documents to take the trip. She has since been released on bail

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 04 August, 2016, 8:01am
UPDATED : Thursday, 04 August, 2016, 9:18am

A 26-year-old doctor from Prince of Wales Hospital has been arrested for using fake documents to take paid study leave after it was revealed that she had actually taken a leisure trip abroad, according to a police spokesman.

It is understood that the doctor, who obtained her licence to practice last year, allegedly used a counterfeit document to take three days leave in March. She is said to have claimed the leave was for her to take an examination.

But her superior at the public hospital in Sha Tin was suspicious, and confronted her about the matter.

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The doctor allegedly then admitted her documents were fake, and that she had gone on a vacation instead.

The case was reported to the Hospital Authority, which then contacted the police on July 22.

The 26-year-old doctor, surnamed Leung, was arrested the same day and released on bail. She is required to report to police in mid August.

Under the public hospital’s policy, each doctor has seven to 14 days of paid study leave to pursue further training, in addition to their annual leave.

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But an insider said it was difficult for doctors to take the leave as public hospitals were severely understaffed.

According to the Hospital Authority, it is short of around 250 doctors at any given time.

“We would not comment on cases about individual staff,” said a spokeswoman for the hospital. She said hospitals would forward a case to the police if they found any staff were suspected of using false documents to claim holidays or other benefits. The hospital said it would cooperate with the police investigation.