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REPUBLIC ACTS

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REPUBLIC ACT NO. 5527

REPUBLIC ACT NO. 5527 - AN ACT REQUIRING THE REGISTRATION OF MEDICAL TECHNOLOGISTS, DEFINING THEIR PRACTICE, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES
 


Section 1.    Title. — This Act may be also cited as the Philippine Medical Technology Act of 1969. 

Sec. 2.    Definition of Terms. — As used in this Act, the following terms shall mean:

(a)    "Medical Technology". — An auxiliary branch of laboratory medicine which deals with the examination by various chemical, microscopic, bacteriologic and other medical laboratory procedures or technic which will aid the physician in the diagnosis, study and treatment of disease and in the promotion of health in general.

(b)    "Pathologist". — A duly registered physician who is specially trained in methods of laboratory medicine, of the gross and microscopic study and interpretation of tissues, secretions and excretions of the human body and its functions in order to diagnose disease, follows its course, determine the effectivity of treatment, ascertain cause of death and advance medicine by means of research.  

(c)    "Medical Technologist". — A person who engages in the work of medical technology under the supervision of a pathologist or licensed physician authorized by the department of health in places where there is no pathologist and who having passed a prescribed course (Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology/Bachelor of Science in Hygiene) of training and examination is registered under the provision of this Act.

(d)    "Medical Technician". — A person who not being a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology/Bachelor of Science in Hygiene, but having passed the corresponding civil service examination, performs the work of medical technology under the supervision of a registered medical technologist and/or qualified pathologist.

(e)    "Accredited Medical Technology Training Laboratory". — A clinical laboratory, office, agency, clinic, hospital sanitarium duly approved by the Department of Health or its authorized agency. 

( f )    "Recognized School of Medical Technology". — Any school, college or university which offers a course in Medical Technology approved by the Department of Education in accordance with the requirements under this Act, upon recommendation of the council of medical technology education.

(g)    "Council". — The council of medical technology education established under this Act.

(h)    "Board". — The Board of Examiners for Medical Technology established under this Act. 

Sec. 3.    Council of Medical Technology Education, Its Composition. — There is hereby established a Council of Medical Technology Education, hereafter referred to as Council, which shall be composed of the Secretary of Education or Director of Private Education as Chairman, the Director of the Bureau of Research and Laboratories of the Department of Health as Vice-Chairman, and the Chairman and two members of the Board of Medical Technology, the dean of the Institute of Hygiene of the University of the Philippines, a representative of the deans or heads of the private schools of medical technology, and the presidents of the Philippine Association of Medical Technologists and the Philippine Society of Pathologists, as members.

Sec. 4.    Compensation and Traveling Expenses of Council Members. — The chairman and members of the Council shall be entitled to a twenty-five pesos per diem for every meeting actually attended: Provided, That the number of meetings authorized with a per diem shall not exceed two in a month: And Provided, further, That officials receiving regular salaries from the Government shall not receive per diem. In addition the chairman and members of the council shall be entitled to traveling expenses in connection with their official duties. 

Sec. 5.    Functions of the Council of Medical Technology Education. — The functions of the Council shall be:

(a)    To recommend the minimum required curriculum for the course of medical technology.

(b)    To determine and prescribe the number of students to be allowed to take up the medical technology course in each school, taking into account the student-instructor ratio and the availability of facilities for instruction.

(c)    To approve medical technology schools meeting the requirements and recommend closure of those found to be substandard. 

(d)    To require all medical technology schools to submit an annual report, including the total number of students and instructors, a list of facilities available for instruction, a list of their recent graduates and new admissions, on or before the month of June.

(e)    To inspect, when necessary, the different medical technology schools in the country in order to determine whether a high standard of education is maintained in said institutions.

( f )    To certify for admission into an undergraduate internship students who have satisfactorily completed three years of the medical technology course or its equivalent and to collect from said students the amount of five pesos each which money accrue to the operating fund of the council.

(g)    Formulate and recommend approval of refresher course for applicants who shall have failed the Board Examination for the third time.

(h)    To promulgate and prescribe and enforce necessary rules and regulations for the proper implementation of the foregoing functions. 

Sec. 6.    Minimum Required Course. — The medical technology course shall be at least four years, including a 12-month satisfactory internship in accredited laboratories, and shall include the following subjects:

English    Biochemistry

Spanish    Gross Anatomy

Social Science    Histology

General Zoology    Physiology

Botany    Clinical Parasitology

Mathematics    General Pathology

College Physics    Microbiology

General Chemistry    Statistics

Qualitative Chemistry    Clinical Laboratory Methods

Quantitative Chemistry    including hematology,
    serology, blood banking, clinical
    microscopy, applied microbiology,
    and parasitology, histopathologic
    techniques, and cyto-technology)

The Council is hereby authorized, subject to the approval of the Secretary of Education to change, remove from or add to the subjects listed above as the needs and demands of progress in the science of medical technology may require. 

Sec. 7.    Board of Examiners for Medical Technology. — There is hereby created a Board of Examiners for Medical Technology which shall hereafter be referred to as the Board composed of a chairman who is a pathologist appointed by the President of the Philippines from a list submitted by the Philippine Society of Pathologists and two members who are registered medical technologists appointed by the President of the Philippines from among a list submitted by the Philippine Association of Medical Technologists each one to serve a term of three years: Provided, That the first Board to be created one member who shall act as chairman shall serve for three years, one member for two years and the third member for one year: And provided, further, That the first members of the Board of Examiners for Medical Technology shall be issued a certificate of registration as Medical Technologist without prior examination in accordance with the provisions of this Act. No member shall be allowed more than one reappointment. The President of the Philippines shall fill the vacancy that may occur but the appointee shall serve only the unexpired term of the incapacitated member.

Sec. 8.    Qualifications of Examiners. — No person shall be appointed a member of the Board of Examiners for Medical Technology unless he or she (1) is a Filipino citizen; (2) is of good moral character; (3) is a qualified pathologist or duly registered medical technologist of the Philippines with the degree of Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology/Bachelor of Science in Hygiene; (4) has been in the practice of laboratory medicine or medical technology for at least ten years prior to his appointment, and (5) is not a member of the faculty of any medical technology school, or have any pecuniary interest, direct or indirect, in such institution: Provided, however, That for the first three years following the approval of this Act, the requirement mentioned in number four (4) shall be reduced to five years. 

Sec. 9.    Executive Officer of the Board. — The Commissioner of Civil Service shall be the Executive Officer of the Board, and shall conduct the examinations given by it. The Secretary of the Board Examiners appointed in accordance with Section ten of Act Numbered Four Thousand Seven, as amended, shall also be the Secretary of the Board. He shall keep a register of all persons to whom certificates of registration have been granted. 

SECTION 10.    Compensation of Members of the Board of Examiners for Medical Technology. — Each member of the Board shall receive a sum of ten pesos for each applicant examined and five pesos for each applicant granted a certificate of registration without examination.

SECTION 11.    Functions and Duties of the Board. — The Board is vested with authority and required, conformably, with the provisions of this Act, to:

(a)    Administer the provisions of this Act;

(b)    Administer oaths in connection with the administration of this Act;

(c)    Issue, suspend and revoke certificates of registration for the practice of medical technology;  

(d)    Look into conditions affecting the practice of medical technology in the Philippines and, whenever necessary, adopt such measures as may be deemed proper for the maintenance of good ethics and standards in the practice of medical technology;

(e)    Investigate such violations of this Act or of the rules and regulations issued thereunder as may come to the jurisdiction of the Board and, for this purpose issue subpoena and subpoena duces tecum to secure appearance of witnesses and promulgations of documents in connection with charges presented to the Board; and

( f )    Draft such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act: Provided, That the same shall be issued only after the approval of the President of the Philippines. 

SECTION 12.    Removal of Board Members. — Any member of the Board may be removed by the President of the Philippines for neglect of duty, incompetency, malpractice or unprofessional, unethical, immoral or dishonorable conduct after having been given opportunity to defend himself in a proper administrative investigation; Provided, That during the process of investigation, the President shall have the power to suspend such member under investigation and appoint a temporary member in his place.

SECTION 13.    Accreditation of Schools of Medical Technology and of Training Laboratories. — Department of Education shall approve schools of medical technology in accordance with the provisions of this Act. The Department of Health or its authorized agency shall upon recommendation of the Council of Medical Technology Education approve laboratories for accreditation as training laboratories for Medical Technology students or postgraduate trainees upon satisfactory evidence that said laboratories possess qualified personnel and properly equipped to carry out laboratory procedures commonly required in the following fields: bacteriology, serology, parasitology, hematology, and biochemistry, and that the scope of activities of said laboratory offer sufficient training in said laboratory procedures.

SECTION 14.    Inhibition Against the Practice of Medical Technology. — No person shall practice or offer to practice medical technology as defined in this Act without having previously obtained a valid certificate of registration from the Board provided that registration shall not be required of the following:

(a)    Duly registered physicians.

(b)    Medical technologists from other countries called in for consultation or as visiting or exchange professors to colleges or universities: Provided, That they are only practicing the said function.  

(c)    Medical technologists in the service of the United States Armed Forces stationed in the Philippines rendering services as such for members of the said forces only.

SECTION 15.    Examination. — Except as otherwise specifically allowed under the provisions of this Act, all applicants for registration as medical technologists shall be required to undergo a written examination which shall be given by the Board annually in the greater Manila area, Cebu and Davao during the month of August or September on such days and places as the Board may designate. Written notices of such examination shall be published in at least three newspapers of national circulation by the Secretary of the Board at least thirty days prior to the date of examination.

SECTION 16.    Qualification for Examination. — Every applicant for examination under this Act, shall, prior to the date thereof, furnish the Board satisfactory proof that he or she: 

(a)    Is in good health and is of good moral character;

(b)    Has completed a course of at least four years leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology or Bachelor of Science in Hygiene conferred by a recognized school, college or university in accordance with this Act and all other persons having graduated from other paramedical professions who are actually performing medical technology for the last five years prior to the enactment of this Act provided they meet the minimum requirements mentioned in Section Six exceeding one year undergraduate internship or practical training.

SECTION 17.    Scope of Coverage & Examination. — The examination question shall cover the following subjects with their respective relative weights: 

Clinical Chemistry    20%

Microbiology and Parasitology    20%

Hematology    20%

Blood Banking and Serology    20%

Clinical Microscopy (Urinalysis and other
    body fluids)    10%

Histopathologic Technique    10%

The Board shall prepare the schedule of subjects for examination and to submit the same to the Commissioner of Civil Service for publication at least four months before the date of examination. The Board shall compute the general average of each examinee according to the abovementioned relative weights of the subjects: Provided, however, That the Board may change, add to or remove from the list of subjects or weights above, as progress in the science of medical technology may require, subject to the prior approval of the council. 

SECTION 18.    Report of Rating. — The Board shall, within one hundred and twenty days after the date of completion of the examination, report the result thereof to the Commissioner of Civil Service, who shall submit such result to the President of the Philippines for approval. 

SECTION 19.    Ratings in the Examination. — In order to pass the examination, a candidate must obtain a general average of at least seventy-five per cent in the written test, with no rating below fifty per cent in any of the major subjects: Provided, That the candidate has not failed in at least sixty per cent of the subjects computed according to their relative weights. No further examination will be given an applicant who has not qualified after three examinations, unless and until he shall have completed 12 months refresher course in an accredited medical technology school or 12-month postgraduate training in an accredited laboratory: 

Provided, That graduate of paramedical professions other than Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology/Bachelor of Science in Hygiene admitted to an examination under the provisions of this Act shall not be given further examinations after his failure to qualify for the third time.

Sec. 20.    Oath taking. — All successful examinees shall be required to take a professional oath before the Board or before any person authorized to administer oaths prior to entering upon the practice of medical technology in the Philippines.

Sec. 21.    Issuance of Certificate of Registration. — Every applicant who has satisfactorily passed the required examination, shall be issued a certificate of registration as Medical Technologist: Provided, That no such certificate shall be issued to any successful applicant who has not attained the age of twenty-one years. All certificates shall be signed by all the members of the Board and attested by its Secretary. The duly registered medical technologist shall be required to display his certificate of registration in the place where he works. Upon application filed after the approval of this Act not later than ninety days after the Board shall have been fully constituted, the Board shall issue a certificate of registration without examination to persons who have been graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Hygiene and/or Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology in duly recognized schools of medical technology in the Philippines or foreign countries who have been in the practice of medical technology for at least three years at the time of the passage of this Act in laboratories in the Philippines or in foreign countries duly accredited by the Bureau of Research and Laboratories, Department of Health, and also to all other persons having graduated from other paramedical professions who are already civil service eligible by authority of the other Boards of profession and who are actually performing medical technology practice for the last five years prior to the enactment of this Act.

Sec. 22.    Fees. — The Board shall charge each applicant for examination and registration the sum of fifty pesos and for each certificate of registration issued without prior examination in accordance with the provisions of this Act the sum of twenty five pesos; for issuance of a new certificate to replace certificate lost, destroyed or mutilated, the Board shall charge the sum of ten pesos. All such fees shall be paid to the disbursing officer of the Civil Service Commission who shall pay from the receipts thereof, all authorized expenses of the Board including the compensation of each member. 

Sec. 23.    Refusal to Issue Certificate. — The Board shall refuse to issue a certificate of registration to any person convicted by a court of competent jurisdiction of any guilty of immoral or dishonorable conduct, or of unsound mind, or incurable communicable disease, and in such case shall give to the applicant a written statement setting forth the reason for its action, which statement shall be incorporated in the record of the Board.

Sec. 24.    Administrative Investigation-Revocation or Suspension of Certificates. — Administrative investigations shall be conducted by at least two members of the Board with one legal officer sitting during the investigation. The existing rules of evidence shall be observed during all administrative proceedings, the respondents shall be entitled to be represented by counsel or be heard in person, to have a speedy and public hearing, to confront and cross-examine witnesses against him or her, and to all other rights guaranteed by the Constitution.

The Board may, after giving proper notice and hearing to the party concerned reprimand an erring medical technologist or revoke or suspend his certificate of registration for the causes mentioned in the next preceding section or for causes enumerated in section twenty-nine (29) of this Act, or for unprofessional conduct, malpractice, incompetency, or serious ignorance or gross negligence in the practice of medical technology. 

No penalty of revocation shall be imposed unless there is a unanimous vote of all the three members of the Board. The Board may, by majority vote, impose the penalty of reprimand or suspension, the latter however not to exceed two years.

When the penalty of suspension or revocation is imposed by the Board the medical technologist shall be required to surrender his certificate of registration within thirty days after the decision becomes final, under the pain of perpetual disqualification from the practice of medical technology in the Philippines for inexcusable failure to do so. The suspension shall run from the date of such surrender.

Sec. 25.    Appeal. — The revocation or suspension of a certificate made by the Board shall be subject to appeal to the Civil Service Commissioner whose decision shall become final thirty days after its promulgation, unless the respondent within the same period has appealed to the office of the President of the Philippines. 

Sec. 26.    Reinstatement, Reissue or Replacement of Certificates. — The Board may, upon application and for reason deemed proper and sufficient, reissue any revoked registration certificate. The suspension of a certificate of registration shall be automatically lifted upon the expiration of the period of suspension and said certificate shall be re-issued to the medical technologist concerned upon request without prejudice to further actions by the Board for violation of the provisions of this Act or conditions imposed by the Board upon the medical technologist during the period of suspension.

Sec. 27.    Foreign Reciprocity. — No foreigner shall be admitted to examination, or be given a certificate of registration or be entitled to any of the rights and privileges under this Act, unless the country or state which he is a subject or a citizen permits Filipino Medical Technologists to practice within its territorial limits on the same basis as the subjects or citizens of said country or state. 

Sec. 28.    Roster of Medical Technologists. — (a) A roster of Medical Technologists shall be prepared annually by the Secretary of the Board, commencing on the year following that in which the Act shall become effective.  The roster shall contain the name, address and citizenship of each registered Medical Technologist, date of registration or issuance of certificate, and other data which in the opinion of the Board are pertinent.  The roster shall be open to public inspection, and copies thereof shall be mailed to each person included therein, placed on file in the Office of the President, furnished all Department Heads and all agencies, offices and instrumentalities of the Department of Health and to such other offices, private or governmental, and to the public upon request.

(b)    Any medical technologist, even if duly registered, who shall practice medical technology in the Philippines without the necessary supervision of a qualified pathologist or physician authorized by the Department of Health;

(c)    Any medical technologist, who shall knowingly make a fraudulent laboratory report; 

(d)    Any duly registered medical technologist who shall refuse or fail, after due warning by the Board to display his certificate or registration in the place where he works;

(e)    Any person presenting or attempting to use as his own, the certificate of registration of another;

( f )    Any person who shall give any false or fraudulent evidence of any kind to the Board member thereof in obtaining as certificate of registration a Medical Technologist;

(g)    Any person who shall impersonate any registrant of like or the same name;

(h)    Any person who shall attempt to use a revoked or suspended certificate of registration; 

(i)    Any person who shall in connection with his name or otherwise, assume use or advertise any title or description tending to convey the impression that he is a Medical Technologist without holding a valid certificate of registration;

( j)    Any person who shall violate any provision of this Act; or

(k)    Any person or corporate body who shall violate the rules and regulations of Board or orders promulgated by it after having been duly approved and issued by the President of the Philippines upon recommendation of the Commissioner of Civil Service for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act.

Sec. 29.    Penal Provisions. — Without prejudice to the provision of the Medical Act of 1959 as amended, pertaining to illegal practice of Medicine, the following shall be punished by a fine of not less than two thousand pesos nor more than five thousand pesos, or imprisonment for not less than six months nor more than two years, or both in the discretion of the court:

(a)    Any person who shall practice Medical Technology in the Philippines without being registered or exempted from registration in accordance with the provisions of the Act;

(b)    Any medical technologist, even if duly registered, who shall practice medical technology in the Philippines without the necessary supervision of a qualified pathologist or physician authorized by the Department of Health;

(c)    Any medical technologist who shall knowingly made a fraudulent laboratory report;

(d)    Any duly registered medical technologist who shall refuse or fail, after due warning by the Board to display his certificate of registration in the place where he works;

(e)    Any person presenting or attempting to use as his own, the certificate of registration of another;

(f)    Any person who shall give any false or fraudulent device of any kind to the Board of any member thereof obtaining a certificate of registration as Medical Technologist;

(g)    Any person who shall impersonate any registrant of a fake or the same name;

(h)    Any person who shall attempt to use a revoked or suspended certificate of registration;

(i)    Any person who shall in connection with his name otherwise, assume, use or advertise any title or description tending to convey the impression that he is a Medical Technologist without holding a valid certificate of registration;

(j)    Any person who shall violate any provision of this Act; or

(k)    Any person or corporate body who shall violate the rules and regulations of Board or orders promulgated by it after having been duly approved and issued by the President of the Philippines upon recommendation of the Commissioner of Civil Service for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act.

Sec. 30.    Separability Clause. — If any provision of this Act or the application of such provision to any person or circumstance is declared invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, the remainder of this Act or of the application of such provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected by such declaration.

Sec. 31.    Repealing Clause. — All Acts, executive orders, rules and regulations, or parts thereof inconsistent with the provisions of this Act are hereby repealed: Provided, however, That nothing in this Act shall be construed as repealing or amending any portion of the Medical Act of 1959 (R.A. 2382, as amended by R.A. 4224), the Clinical Laboratory Act of 1966 (R.A. 4688), and the Blood Banking Law of 1956 (R.A. 1517).

Sec. 32.    Effectivity. — This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

Approved: June 21, 1969  

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