I went to hospital today for treatment.
Old ailment working up again.
Bumped into a schoolfriend who is a surgeon there.
We had lunch and talked quite a bit about what is happening ever since we last met about a year ago.
She was apparently worried over the latest directive by the Inland Revenue Board (IRB) on tax treatment for doctors at private hospitals like her,
She said the directive, issued earlier this week requires tax treatment for doctors like her be based on personal basis instead of Sdn Bhd as had been the practice all these while.
Like most other doctors at private hospitals, my friend had set up a Sdn Bhd company and received her service fees from the hospital through it.
She technically provides her services via her own company while "renting" facilities at the hospital.
"What I understand is that the tax I paid via my company over the past three years since I'm at this hospital will not be counted. I have to pay a new sum on personal basis and on top of that I have to pay penalties," my friend said.
"I had done the calculations and it looks like I have to pay about RM1.3 million for the whole sum. I'm not really sure where I'm going to get that much money, as the deadline is on December 15.
"My lawyer said I can't fight this one as I will surely lose and they will punish me further later on," she added.
She said she had always paid her taxes on time and as according to the normal practice.
"If the method of my payment was wrong, why did they only tell me about it now. I have no intention of cheating the government. It's just that I followed the practice which have been in place all these while."
My friend said the Malaysian Medical Association had told the over 3,000 affected doctors nationwide not to fight the IRB directive.
"Even our association had abandoned us. They even told us not to make noise about this," she lamented.
"Talks among my fellow doctors is that they will go after those who run private clinics after this," she added.
My friend, who is an Umno member also told me that the government's standing among the affected doctors is not very good at the moment for obvious reason.
Hopefully the IRB can come up with some sorts of mechanism so that the doctors will not be too burdened by the whole thing.
I don't think it's wise to be harsh towards those doctors at this moment in time.
They save lives, okay.
We should at least appreciate them for that.
It's also not such a good thought to have 3,000 doctors joining the rank of people who hate the government.
Anyway, I'm writing this while laying down on my bed.
The doctor who treated me today told me to rest my body as much as I can to avoid aggravating my old ailment.