TUN Dr Mahathir Mohamad says the alleged new privatisation plan for the National Heart Institute (IJN) will defeat the purpose why the IJN was set up.
The former premier said this when asked if such a move by the IJN board of directors would undermine
the function of the hospital which was to accord affordable health services.
Dr Mahathir, himself once a patient at IJN, said many people were looking at the profitability of the IJN.
“Some people are being influenced by this,” he said, but added that was not what IJN was set up for.
Dr Mahathir was an instrumental figure in the formation of IJN, which was once part of Kuala Lumpur General Hospital until 1992 when it was corporatised.
IJN provides services for cardiovascular and thoracic health.
A previous privatisation attempt was in December 2008, when it was discovered that Sime Darby Bhd had plans to acquire a 51 per cent stake in IJN Holdings Sdn Bhd, that ran the heart institute.
The plan however failed when there was a huge public outcry and strong opposition from the blogging fraternity, with even Dr Mahathir voicing his disapproval.