The Medical Association has criticised a review report on the Hospital Authority for being too vague and called for an independent body to supervise implementation of its recommendations. The Steering Committee on Review of Hospital Authority released a report in mid-July. It listed 10 major recommendations for the body that manages the city’s 42 public hospitals. Dr Tse Hung-hing, chairman of the association’s task force on reviewing the operation of the authority, expressed disappointment with the report. “It is very vague in general and touches on principles only,” he said. While the authority is expected to submit an action plan next month on how to carry out the proposed reforms, the city’s largest doctors’ group said monitoring of the process would be minimal as the steering committee had been dissolved. “The government and the Hospital Authority said only that they would handle the matter,” noted Public Doctors’ Association president Dr Pierre Chan Pui-yin, who was a member of the steering committee. An extra HK$300 million earmarked for three hospital clusters – New Territories East and West and Kowloon East – was also said to be “largely inadequate”. Tse said there was a need for a clearer explanation of how the funds would be spent. The doctors also said the medical lawmaker or representatives of the Medical Association should be added to the authority’s board. “It is unbelievable that there is no doctor on the board, yet there are lawyers and accountants,” said Dr Louis Shih Tai-cho, the association’s president. Among the current 28 board members, only a few have any medical background, yet they work mostly at the management level. “The association represents almost all doctors in the city. It is influential enough to give out medical recommendations,” he said. A spokesman for the authority said the board had set up a special group to draft plans to implement the poposed changes, which would be introduced gradually over three years.