The Ministry of Health said Thursday it would shut down a Phnom Penh health center that claims to cure diseases such as cancer and diabetes with the help of detoxifying machines, according to officials.
Immanuel Bicom True Healing Center in Chamkar Mon district did not have a license and did not employ staff with medical training, Sok Sokun, director of the Phnom Penh municipal health department, said of the ministry’s decision to shut the facility down three months after its soft opening, and two days before the grand opening.
“Now we decided to close the Immanuel healing clinic center this morning, because they don’t have a license,” Mr. Sokun said Thursday.
“If they continue to treat patients, we will start to fine them,” he said.
Mr. Sokun said that his department had investigated the center and found that despite its claims to be able to successfully treat patients for cancer, diabetes, and arthritis, it was not equipped to do so.
“It is only a center equipped with a few machines, so how can they provide treatment? Even the hospitals equipped with proper machines can almost not provide proper treatment, so how can they be a good clinic?” Mr. Sokun said.
Professional medical treatments such as chemotherapy and surgery are necessary to treat diseases such as cancer, and these are not being provided at Immanuel Bicom, he said.
Saing Sary, director of the Ministry of Health’s hospital department, said that the center was endangering people’s health.
“If the Immanuel center provides treatment, it can negatively affect people’s lives,” Mr. Sary said.
Immanuel Bicom’s owner, Helena Kun Lim, who said that she had received a calling from God telling her to help the sick, admitted that she did not have a license from the Ministry of Health during an interview earlier this week.
Diseases, she said, were caused by toxins in air, water and food. By buying detoxifying machines for hundreds of dollars, however, the body can be detoxified and thereby cured.
However, asked Thursday if she had been informed by the Health Ministry that she was being closed down, Ms. Kun Lim said she knew nothing about it and claimed she did in fact have a license.
“I didn’t hear anything about this,” she said. “No one can close my center because I have a license.”
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