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Ha Noi pledges crackdown on gender test sticks

Update: June, 05/2013 - 10:18

HA NOI (VNS)— A doctor in Ha Noi was recently caught red-handed selling foetus gender test sticks, prompting the city's health officials to take this illegal business more seriously.

The violator, age 31, owns Viet Phap General Clinic in Cau Giay District's Mai Dich Street, according to chief inspector of the municipal Health Department Nguyen Viet Cuong.

Many pregnant women followed internet advertisements to buy the sticks, which allegedly reveal the gender of a foetus at the age of six or seven weeks.

Such gender selection acts are illegal in Viet Nam.

The doctor admitted that he had ordered the sticks from a man in HCM City on the internet and sold them each for VND1 million (US$47).

To find customers, he published his telephone number on raovat.com.

The doctor was fined VND14.5 million ($690) and forced to remove all his internet advertising.

Cuong said that the doctor violated regulations on population and medical examinations as well as on online advertising.

The chief inspector also advised against the use of the sticks, which have no clear origin and unverified quality.

Deputy director of the National Hospital for Obstetrics and Gynaecology Vu Ba Quyet said there was no scientific proof that the sticks were effective.

"No pharmaceutical firm in the country has been permitted to supply such sticks, so residents should not believe any advertising claims," he said.

The Ha Noi Department of Health promised to step up inspections at obstetrics and gynaecology clinics to prevent foetus gender tests. — VNS

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