Point in Time
Act No: CAP. 253
Act Title: MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS AND DENTISTS
[ Date of commencement: 1st January, 1978. ]
[ Date of assent: 8th November, 1977. ]
Arrangement of Sections
1.
Short title

This Act may be cited as the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Act.

3A.
Composition of the Council
(1)

The Council shall consist of—

(a)

a chairperson who shall be appointed by the President and who shall—

(i) be a specialist medical or dental practitioner of good standing; and
(ii) have at least ten years' experience, five of which shall be in a managerial position;
(b)

the Director General for Health or a designated representative;

(c)

four persons appointed by the Cabinet Secretary, nominated as follows—

(i) one person who shall be a representative of universities in Kenya which have the power to grant a qualification which is registerable under this Act;
(ii) one person who shall be a representative of the Kenya Medical Association;
(iii) one person who shall be a representative of Kenya Dental Association; and
(iv) one person who shall be a representative of oral health practitioners;
(d)

three persons appointed by the Cabinet Secretary, as follows—

(i) one person who shall be nominated by Kenya National Commission on Human Rights;
(ii) one person who shall be a representative of the private sector in health; and
(iii) one person with knowledge and expertise in finance or audit; and
(e)

the Chief Executive Officer who shall be the Registrar and an ex officio member and also the secretary to the Council.

(2)

A person appointed as a member of the Council under this Act, other than the ex officio member, shall serve for a term of three years and shall be eligible for reappointment for a further and final term of three years.

(3)

The chairperson shall preside at all meetings of the Council and, in the absence for any reason of the chairperson, the other members of the Council who are present at that meeting shall choose one of the members to act as the chairperson at the meeting.

(4)

A member of the Council may—

(a)

at any time resign from office by giving thirty days' notice in writing to the chairperson;

(b)

be removed from office if the member—

(i) has been absent from three consecutive meetings of the Council without permission of the chairperson;
(ii) is convicted of an offence involving dishonesty or fraud;
(iii) is convicted of a criminal offence and sentenced to imprisonment for a term exceeding six months or more; or
(iv) is incapacitated by prolonged physical or mental illness or is deemed otherwise unfit to discharge his or her duties as a member of the Council.
(5)

Six members of the Council shall constitute a quorum at any meeting.

(6)

The powers of the Council shall not be affected by any vacancy in the membership thereof.

(7)

The Council shall meet at least once in every three months.

(8)

The chairperson, may, with prior approval of the Council, appoint suitable persons to assist in carrying out particular decisions of the Council or particular duties or investigations for the Council.

(9)

Subject to the provisions of this Act, the Council may regulate its own procedure.

(10)

Pursuant to nominations in paragraphs (1)(c) and (d), each organization shall present two nominees one of whom shall be appointed by the Cabinet Secretary taking into account ethnic diversity, gender, disability, skills mix and regional balance.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

4A.
Committees of the Council
(1)

The Council shall constitute the following committees—

(a)

training, assessment, registration and human resources committee;

(b)

disciplinary and ethics committee whose mandate shall include—

(i) conducting inquiries into complaints submitted to it;
(ii) regulating professional conduct;
(iii) ensuring fitness to practice and operate;
(iv) promoting mediation and arbitration between parties; and
(v) at its own liberty, recording and adopting mediation agreements or compromise between parties, on the terms agreed;
(c)

inspections, licensing, finance and general purposes committee; and

(d)

audit and risk committee.

(2)

The Council may from time to time appoint such other ad hoc committees as it may deem necessary for the effective carrying out of its functions under this Act.

(3)

Any committee appointed by the Council under subsection (1) or (2) shall consist of such persons as the Council deems necessary.

(4)

The Corporation Secretary shall be the secretary of all committees appointed under this Act.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

4B.
Powers of the Council

The Council shall have all powers necessary for the proper performance of its functions under this Act and in particular, but without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, shall have power to—

(a)

control, supervise and administer the assets of the Council in such manner and for such purpose as best promotes the purpose for which the Council is established;

(b)

determine the provisions to be made for capital and recurrent expenditure and for the reserves of the Council;

(c)

receive any grants, gifts, donations or endowments and make legitimate disbursements therefrom;

(d)

enter into an association with other bodies or organizations within or outside Kenya as the Council may consider desirable or appropriate and in furtherance of the purpose for which the Council is established;

(e)

open a bank account or banking accounts for the funds of the Council; and

(f)

invest any of the funds of the Council not immediately required for its purposes in accordance with the Public Finance Management Act, No. 18 of 2012 and other relevant laws.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

4C.
Chief Executive Officer
(1)

There shall be a Chief Executive Officer of the Council who shall be appointed by the Council through a competitive process and whose terms and condition of service shall be determined by the Council in an instrument of appointment or otherwise in writing from time to time.

(2)

A person shall be qualified to be appointed as the Chief Executive Officer if the person—

(a)

possesses a masters' degree or its equivalent from a university recognised in Kenya;

(b)

has at least ten years professional and administrative experience in matters related to health; and

(c)

meets the requirements of Chapter Six of the Constitution.

(3)

The Chief Executive Officer shall be responsible for the daily management of the staff and affairs of the Council.

(4)

The Chief Executive Officer shall serve for a term of four years and shall be eligible, subject to satisfactory performance, to reappointment for a single further term of four years.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

4D.
Staff of the Council

The Council may employ such professional, technical and other staff for the proper and efficient discharge of its functions on such terms and conditions as the Council may determine.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

8.
Correction of register
(1)

The Registrar shall from time to time make any necessary alterations and corrections in the register in relation to any entry therein.

(2)

The Registrar shall remove from the register—

(a)

the name of every deceased person;

(b)

the name of every person convicted of an offence under section 19;

(c)

the name of every person whose name the Board has under section 20 directed should be struck off the register; and

(d)

any entry which has been incorrectly or fraudulently made in the register.

(3)

The Registrar may, with the consent of the person concerned, remove from the register the name of a person who has ceased to practise.

(4)

The Registrar shall, not later than 1st July in each year, send by registered post to every person registered in the register a notice inquiring whether or not that person has ceased to practise or has changed his address, and, if no answer is returned to the inquiry within six months from the posting thereof, the name of that person may be removed from the register; but a name removed under this subsection may, at the request of the person concerned and on payment of the prescribed fee, be reinstated by the Registrar.

(5)

The Registrar-General of Births and Deaths shall notify the Registrar of the death of any registered medical practitioner or dentist.

10.
Publication prima facie evidence of registration
(1)

The publication of the list of registered medical and dental practitioners in the Gazette shall be prima facie evidence that the persons named therein are registered under this Act, and the absence of the name of any person from such list shall be prima facie evidence that the person is not so registered.

(2)

All register books and all copies thereof or extracts therefrom certified under the hand of the Registrar shall be receivable in evidence in all courts.

11A.
Supervisory functions of the Board
(1)

The Board shall satisfy itself that courses of study to be followed by students for a degree in medicine or dentistry, including the standard of proficiency required for admission thereto and the standards of examinations leading to the award of a degree, are sufficient to guarantee that the holder thereof has acquired the minimum knowledge and skill necessary for the efficient practice of medicine or dentistry.

(2)

For the purposes of this section the Board may—

(a)

appoint persons to visit any university or other institution in Kenya offering a course in medicine or dentistry and to report to it on the course of study, staffing, accommodation and equipment available for training in medicine or dentistry and other arrangements available for such training;

(b)

appoint persons to attend examinations in any aspect of medicine or dentistry at any such university or institution and to report to it on the sufficiency of the examinations and on such matters relating thereto as the Board may require;

(c)

require the dean or head of the faculty of medicine or dentistry or both at any such university or institution to provide written information to it concerning any of the matters referred to in paragraph (a) or (b).

(3)

The Board shall forward a copy of any report made under subsection (2) to the university or institution concerned and may, if it is satisfied that the standard of any course or examination is insufficient, and after it has given the university or institution an opportunity of making observations on the report, require the university or institution in writing to take such measures as it may specify in order to improve or rectify the standard of such course or examination.

(4)

If the Board, after requirements in writing has been made under subsection (3), is satisfied that the university or institution has nevertheless failed to take measures which are in the opinion of the Board necessary to improve or rectify the standard of any course or examination, it may cancel or suspend any recognition of a degree, diploma, or qualification awarded by that university or institution for the purposes of section 11:

Provided that no degree awarded prior to such cancellation or suspension shall be thereby affected.

11B.
Recognition of specialists
(1)

The Council may recognize a medical or dental practitioner as a specialist in any of the fields under the Act or the rules thereunder.

(2)

A medical or dental practitioner shall be recognized as a specialist if the medical or dental practitioner—

(a)

is a holder of a post graduate qualification equivalent to masters' degree in medicine or dental surgery awarded after a period of training recognized by the Council; and

(b)

has at least two years' experience after obtaining the post graduate qualification under the supervision of a recognized specialist.

(3)

The Council may recognize a medical or dental practitioner as a sub-specialist in any of the fields under the Act or the rules thereunder.

(4)

A medical or dental practitioner shall be recognized as a sub-specialist if the medical or dental practitioner—

(a)

possesses a basic specialist qualification in his or her discipline;

(b)

has at least six months training; and

(c)

has at least one year experience under the supervision of a recognized sub-specialist.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]

16.
Licences to be published in Gazette

The issue and the cancellation, revocation or withdrawal of a licence under section 13 or section 15 shall be published in the Gazette.

17.
No fees recoverable unless person licensed under section 15

No person shall be entitled to recover a charge for medical or surgical advice or attendance, or for the performance of an operation as a medical practitioner or dentist, or for medicine which he has prescribed and supplied as a medical practitioner or dentist, unless he is at the time appropriately licensed under section 15.

18.
Certificate not valid unless signatory registered, etc

No certificate or other document required by law to be signed by a duly qualified medical or dental practitioner shall be valid unless signed by a person registered as a medical or dental practitioner under this Act or, where the context so admits, by a person who is licensed by the Board under section 13.

19A.
Report of convictions

The court by which a medical practitioner or dentist is convicted of an offence under the Penal Code (Cap. 63) or this Act or any court by which his case is brought by way of appeal against conviction shall report the conviction or the upholding of a conviction to the Board specifying the name of the medical practitioner or dentist, as the case may be, the date of the conviction or judgment on appeal and the offence for which he was convicted.

21.
Effect of removal, cancellation or suspension
(1)

Where the name of a person has been removed from the register, the name of that person shall not, subject to the provisions of this Act, be again entered in the register except by order of the Board.

(2)

Where an order has been made for the removal of a person’s name from the register, or for suspending the effect of a person’s registration under this Act, or for cancelling or suspending a licence granted to a person under this Act, the Board may either on its own motion or on the application of the person concerned, and in either case after holding such inquiry as the Board thinks fit, cause the name of that person to be restored to the register or terminate the suspension of the registration, or, as the case may be, grant a new licence or terminate the suspension of the existing licence, in any such case either without fee or on the payment of such fee, not exceeding the appropriate registration or licence fee, as the Board may determine.

(3)

Subsection (1) shall not apply when a person’s name has been removed from the register at his request or with his consent in circumstances under which it could not have been removed without consent, and the name of that person shall on his application and on the payment of the prescribed fee, if any, be restored to the register.

25.
Finance

The Minister may, with the consent of the Treasury, out of money provided by Parliament—

(a)

make to the Board such grants as may be necessary to enable it to discharge its functions under this Act;

(b)

pay remuneration and travelling and other allowances to the members of the Board (other than members who are public officers in receipt of a salary);

(c)

make such other payments as may be necessary to give effect to the provisions of this Act.

26.
Savings and transition
(1)

All property, assets, rights, liabilities, obligations, agreements and other arrangements existing at the commencement of this Act and vested in, acquired, incurred or entered into by or on behalf of the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, shall be deemed to have vested in or to have been acquired, incurred or entered into by or on behalf of the Council to the same extent as they were enforceable by or against Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council.

(2)

A person who is an employee of the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, shall be deemed to be an employee of the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council on the terms and conditions existing, until the expiry of the contract.

(3)

Any legal proceedings pending in any court or tribunal by or against the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, in respect of any matter shall continue by or against the Council.

(4)

The members of the Medical Practitioners and Dentists Board, who were appointed, nominated or elected as Board members under section 4, shall continue to hold and act as Council members, until the end of their term.

[Act No. 5 of 2019, Sch.]