Public Statement – Mr Houde Zhang ‘Tom’ – Remedial Massage Therapist – Permanent Prohibition Order

14 July 2022

The NSW Health Care Complaints Commission (Commission) investigated the conduct of Mr Houde Zhang (‘Tom’), the owner of Kangayan Professional Remedial Massage at 2/7 Amy St Campsie (Kangayan Massage).

In his capacity as a remedial massage therapist, Mr Zhang is considered to be an unregistered health practitioner and subject to the Code of Conduct for unregistered health practitioners (Code of Conduct) set out in schedule 3 of the Public Health Regulation 2012.

Patient A, a 62-year-old woman, attended Kangayan Massage on Friday 28 August 2020. Patient A told Mr Zhang that she had back pain and he advised her that in order to heal the back pain, massage on top of the chest was essential. After the massage had commenced, Patient A felt severe pain and heard a cracking noise. Mr Zhang assured her that there was no problem with her bone and that the pain would disappear within one or two days. 

Patient A reported that following the massage her chest pain became worse and it was difficult to breathe, that she was unable to sleep at night due to the pain and suffered a burn injury because she was unable to hold heavy things.

On 1 September 2020 Patient A attended her general practitioner Dr X. Dr X found there was an acute displaced fracture involving the anterior second rib end close to the costochondral junction. This is confirmed by an MRI scan taken on 3 September 2021, a report from orthopaedic surgeon dated 9 September 2020 and a report from a cardiothoracic surgeon dated 25 September 2021.

Between 22 January 2021 and 6 December 2021 Mr Zhang has refused to respond to the Commission’s multiple requests for information including the statutory notices issued to him under s21A and s34A of the Health Care Complaints Act 1993 (the Act). Mr Zhang has breached s21A and s34A of the Act

Based on the available medical records and in the absence of a response from Mr Zhang, the Commission’s investigation found that on 28 August 2020 Patient A was massaged by Mr Zhang and suffered an injury, namely, an acute displaced fracture involving the anterior second rib end close to the costochondral junction. As such Mr Zhang failed to provide health services to Patient A in a safe manner, in breach of clause (3)(1) of the Code of Conduct.

Furthermore, the Commission considers that Mr Zhang’s conduct in refusing to participate in the Commission’s investigation and to comply with the statutory notices, Mr Zhang has failed to provide health services in an ethical manner, again in breach of clause (3)(1) of the Code of Conduct.

For these reasons the Commission also considers that Mr Zhang poses a risk to the health and safety of members of the public.

Accordingly, the Commission makes the following prohibition order under section 41A(2)(a) of the Health Care Complaints Act 1993 (Act):

 Mr Houde Zhang (‘Tom’) is prohibited, under any circumstances, to provide, or cause to be provided, any massage services, either in paid employment or voluntarily, to any member of the public.

This prohibition order will remain in place until Mr Zhang can satisfy the Commission that he is:

  • Appropriately qualified to provide massage services;
  • Not a risk to public health and safety.

Further Information

Access the Commission’s Statement of Decision here

Access to the Commission's media release here.

For further information, contact the Executive Officer of the Health Care Complaints Commission, on 9219 7444 or send an email to media@hccc.nsw.gov.au.

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