Indian-origin member of New Zealand health board suspended over email row

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Auckland, Dec. 17 (ANI): An Indian-origin board member of New Zealand's Waikato District Health Board (DHB) has been suspended for refusing to apologise for his controversial e-mail in which he questioned the integrity of his fellow board members and the DHB management.

Dr Suresh Vatsyayann, an elected member of the Waikato DHB, sent out an email to board members where he questioned the integrity of members and the management.

He has regularly criticised the DHB in the media, including posts in an online blog.

Stuff.co.nz quoted Waikato DHB Chairman Graeme Milne as saying that Dr Vatsyayann had failed to respond to the request to withdraw the comments and had been suspended until an "appropriate apology" had been received.

"The DHB is a billion dollar organisation with more than 5800 staff... Those people, the DHB staff, management and board members deserve to have board members with the highest professional and ethical standards," he added.

"Dr Vatsyayann's behaviour was well below those standards."

Dr Vatsyayann refused to issue any statement in media, but said he would respond via his website, freegp.net.nz this evening.

Earlier this year, Dr Vatsyayann, who runs his own private practice, was found guilty of producing false or misleading medical notes by the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal.

He appealed the allegations, which a judge upheld in August. (ANI)

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