Doctor suspended for offensive posts on HardwareZone | The New Paper

Doctor suspended for offensive posts on HardwareZone

This article is more than 12 months old

Dr Lee Kwan Chen, based in Australia, posted numerous offensive statements on Singapore tech portal's forums

An Australian medical tribunal riled by lurid posts that an errant doctor placed on Singapore tech portal HardwareZone's forums has banned him from six weeks' practice and ordered him to undergo lessons in ethical behaviour and communications, particularly in the use of social media.

The Medical Board of Australia had taken Dr Lee Kwan Chen, 31, who is now based in Victoria state, to the Tasmanian Health Practitioners Tribunal for professional misconduct over numerous inappropriate and offensive statements online.

Dr Lee, who worked for the Tasmania Health Service for two years from February 2016, had posted two photographs on the HardwareZone forum showing him in medical attire and with his degree certificates.

In a comment he posted in December 2017, Dr Lee referred to an article about a male Egyptian lawyer who was jailed for three years for saying women who wear ripped jeans should be raped as punishment.

In the post, Dr Lee said: "I'm surprised they didn't give him a medal instead."


A month later, he posted that if his marriage should fall apart, "it would not end in divorce, it would end in murder".

In his defence, Dr Lee explained comments he had made, including one in 2016 in which he posted: "Some women deserve to be raped, and that supercilious little ***** fits the bill in every way."

He said the comment was made in "the context of a socio-political situation in Singapore/ Malaysia where as a result of certain events, a local female college student made disparaging remarks about (national) servicemen".

While he accepted they could be perceived as inflammatory, misogynistic or racist, he insisted he has not allowed his views to affect his care of patients, and that anger had clouded his judgment then.

Dr Lee added that he was relatively young and inexperienced, and had an opinionated bent to his conduct on social media at the time.

A joint submission by Dr Lee and the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency said his online views did not colour or influence his medical practice. It said he has also never been discriminatory or derogatory towards the groups of individuals that his comments are allegedly inflammatory towards.

However, tribunal chairman Robert Webster ordered Dr Lee be reprimanded and suspended for six weeks starting next month.