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QCAT upholds ban for former chiropractor

The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) has confirmed an interim prohibition order issued by the Health Ombudsman preventing former chiropractor George Zaphir from providing any health services.

This comes after Mr Zaphir sought a review by QCAT of the interim prohibition order issued by the Health Ombudsman in August 2016 in response to a complaint about Mr Zaphir’s treatment of Mr Ian Booth.

Health Ombudsman Leon Atkinson-MacEwen said he can issue an interim prohibition order if a practitioner’s health, conduct or performance means they pose a serious risk to people, and immediate action is necessary to protect the health and safety of the public

“There was certainly a risk to the public in the case of Mr Zaphir and, under the circumstances, immediate action to prohibit any further practise was appropriate,” Mr Atkinson-MacEwen said.

“Mr Zaphir showed a disregard for the health of Mr Booth when he advised and encouraged him to avoid conventional treatment and instead to rely on unproven alternative therapies to treat his cancer.

“Mr Zaphir misrepresented himself to Mr Booth as a qualified medical practitioner and provided advice which was not in his best interests.

“When it became clear that Mr Booth’s condition was not improving, Mr Zaphir refused to continue treating him and failed to make adequate arrangements for the transfer of his care to another health practitioner.”

The Office of the Health Ombudsman may apply to QCAT to impose a permanent prohibition order which would prevent Mr Zaphir from ever practising again.

To read the decision in full, go to the Supreme Court Library of Queensland.

Media contact: For more information contact the Office of the Health Ombudsman on email media@oho.qld.gov.au.