On April 19th, 2013, Ministry of Justice (MOJ) forcefully transferred President Chen from Taipei Veteran General Hospital to Taichung Prison without informing or getting consent from his primary doctor (i.e., violating the medical laws in Taiwan). Since then, we, members of volunteering medical team, had not been allowed to see President Chen as doctors to provide the medical care he needs. At best, we could only visit him as regular visitors and were prohibited to conduct any medical examinations. During the visit, we were asked to sign a gag order, promising not to comment on his medical conditions. In June, we formally petitioned MOJ to get permission to treat President Chen in Taichung Prison but our repeated requests were ignored. On August 13, after President Chen applied for medical care at his own expenses (based on the self-financed medical care law for inmates) with endorsement from his assigned doctor at Taichung Prison, our member, Dr. Chen Chiao-Chicy, a renowned psychiatrist, was finally allowed to examine President Chen.
However, after Dr. Chen's examination, we were told that each treatment by us must be approved as a new case. Dr. Chen Chiao-Chicy's second application, as well as the application by Dr. Chen Shuen-Shen, a world famous neurologist, have been put aside. The staff at Taichung Prison, though courteous, informed us that they had no authority to approve the applications and they must wait for MOJ's instructions. Currently, there is no Minister of Justice at MOJ (note that Tseng Yon-Fu, the former minister, was recently forced to resign by Ma), while the deputy minister does not respond to our applications. As a result, we are not able to visit President Chen again, and the planned 2nd surgery to treat his severe sleep apnea is also up in the air.
We turn to DPP legislators for help. However, at the moment, there are many political issues in Taiwan (due to Ma's cleansing war against Wang, Legislation Yuan Chief, for the sake of pushing through the service trade agreement with China). We are left in despair without knowing when, or if, the applications would be approved even though President Chen's applications to have self-financed medical care meet all the requirements by the prison law,
Janice Chen, Spokesperson for the Volunteering Medical Team for President Chen