Biometric system for foreign workers' medical tests from Oct (Updated)

01 Aug 2017 / 22:45 H.

SHAH ALAM: A biometric fingerprint identification system is to be used when foreign workers go for medical examination to prevent identity fraud.
This is the Immigration Department’s answer to the problem of identity fraud used to help thousands of medically unfit foreign workers to pass medical examinations.
Under the system, which will be fully implemented by October, all foreign workers undergoing medical check-up will have to go through biometric identification to verify and cross-check their identities with the Malaysian Immigration System (myIMMs).
It will be in place at over 3,000 Foreign Workers’ Medical Examination Monitoring Agency (Fomema) panel clinics and X-ray centres nationwide.
“This new system in clinics provides another layer in terms of biometric identification,” said Immigration Director-General Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali, who lauched the system here today.
“This is because we have found quite a number of cases where other individuals had gone for the checkups in place of the foreign workers,” said Mustafar.
However, he declined to provide more details on the fraud cases uncovered.
It is believed there have been cases where some employers arranged for other people to stand in for their foreign workers, who are believed to be medically unfit, in order to let them pass the examinations.
Mustafar warned that those caught for identity fraud, including abetting employers, will be charged under the Immigration Act.
“When foreign workers first enter the country, their biometrics are scanned into myIMMs.
“So those whose identity is found to be fraudulent, or are not registered workers, the medical checkup will not take place, and we will take action against the employer as well as those who acted as the employee.
According to Mustafar, a total of 407,870 medical examinations have been conducted on foreign workers during the first half of this year.
Of that number, 10,618 failed the checkup due to various medical conditions.
Mustafar said the top three diseases were tuberculosis (TB), sexually transmitted diseases (STD) and hepatitis.
Meanwhile, commenting on the 2016 Auditor-General’s Report that revealed 155,813 of the 179,364 undocumented migrants deported between 2014 and 2016 were not blacklisted on myIMMs, Mustafar said the department had improved its system since the audit was conducted in November 2016.
“We didn’t wait until the report was released on Monday. We immediately discussed the issue, and have taken the necessary action to improve our system,” he added.

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