SINGAPORE: The Ministry of Health (MOH) has taken the owner of an optical shop to task for unlawful optometry and opticianry practice.
Siow Swee Tin, the sole proprietor of M/S Nation Optical, and Kho Liang Ti, who was previously employed as a sales assistant at the optical shop, were convicted on Wednesday.
Kho pleaded guilty to unlawful engagement in the practice of opticianry from January 3 to 6, 2012; whereas Siow pleaded guilty to employing Kho, an unqualified person, to carry out the practice of opticianry.
Kho was sentenced to a fine of S$1,500 and Siow was fined S$3,000.
If Kho is not able to pay the fine of S$1,500, she will be imprisoned for a week and if Siow is not able to pay the fine of S$3,000, she will be imprisoned for two weeks.
Under the Optometrists and Opticians Act, a person must be registered with the Optometrists & Opticians Board (OOB) and hold a valid practising certificate in order to practise optometry or opticianry.
Any person who contravenes the Optometrists and Opticians Act shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $25,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both, and in the case of a second or subsequent conviction, to a fine not exceeding $50,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or to both.
In December 2011, the OOB detected a suspected case of illegal practising of opticianry at M/S Nation Optical.
Investigations revealed that Kho had performed eye tests and had been dispensing spectacles to customers even though she was neither registered nor held a valid practising certificate to practice as an optician.
Investigations also revealed that Siow had employed Kho, knowing that she was neither registered nor held a valid practising certificate to practice as an optician.
He had allowed her to conduct eye tests and dispense spectacles to customers even though he knew that she was not supposed to do so.
To protect the interest and safety of consumers, MOH said the ministry and the OOB will not hesitate to take stern enforcement action against the illegal practice of optometry or opticianry.
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