6 people arrested over Hubei hospital's fake birth certificate sales
Six people, including the director of Xiangyang Jianqiao Hospital in central China's Hubei Province, have been arrested and four others detained following the exposure that the hospital allegedly sold counterfeit birth certificates, according to a notice issued by the Xiangyang Municipal Government on Sunday.
The local health authorities have revoked the medical practice qualification of the hospital director, surnamed Ye, and nurse practice qualification of a nurse, surnamed Liu, while other medical personnel involved in the case are also being investigated.
Operation at Jianqiao Hospital has been suspended and its authority to issue birth certificates and engage in maternal and child health care services has been revoked.
Thirteen other relevant persons have also been placed under investigation by the local discipline inspection authorities.
On November 6, a whistleblower identified as Shangguan Zhengyi revealed on social media that after over a year of undercover investigation, he found that the director of Xiangyang Jianqiao Hospital collaborated with various intermediaries and used social media platforms to publicly sell birth certificates and vaccination records.
He accused the hospital of selling fake birth certificates for 96,000 yuan (US$13,169) each, with 66,000 yuan going as commission to the hospital director and the remaining amount being divided among the hospital's staff.
Shangguan said the issued medical birth certificates were authentic and verifiable, some for trafficked children, others for surrogates, and some even for abandoned infants.
Local police launched an investigation on the evening of the exposure.
Meanwhile, the obstetrics and gynecology department of another hospital, Nanning Chenghe Hospital, in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, which was also exposed by the public for selling counterfeit birth certificates, has been shut down and the person in charge of the hospital placed under criminal compulsory measures, Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday.
An investigation has been launched by local police and health authorities.