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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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Pseudo medical tests - a decision of UOKiK

< previous | next > 02.01.2019

Pseudo medical tests - a decision of UOKiK
  • Promed (previously NMedical, NovuMedical) invites people to have medical tests, which turn out to be a trade show.
  • The company refuses to let the client withdraw from the contract.
  • The punishment for infringement of collective consumer interests amounts to almost PLN 370,000.

The proceedings against Promed (previously operating under the brand name NMedical, NovuMedical) were initiated in June 2018. The case was referred to the Office by the Consumer Ombudsman in Węgrów. The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection received a lot of complaints, especially from the elderly people and their families.

Promed calls them and invites for free tests. It turns out that the real purpose of the invitation is to sell an expensive medical package. ‘The medical tests’ are conducted by Promed employees who are not physicians. They use equipment that is called the Quantum analyser, but this device is not a medical apparatus and its effectiveness has not been confirmed.

- UOKiK questions the credibility of these tests. A client holds a probe for one and a half minutes and then gets a printout with information that, for example, he/she has atherosclerosis, bone rheumatism, lung infection. The disease cannot be diagnosed in this way – said Marek Niechciał, President of UOKiK. Based on the printout, Promed employees suggest that the client’s health condition is endangered. The Promed medical programme – a rehabilitation mat and a stay in a medical centre - may help. The cost is PLN 5,500. One of the persons wrote that the test consisted of holding a metal handle. Based on the printout, the gentleman said that I was very ill; he suggested that I have a liver disease, osteitis in the hands, that half of my brain does not function. He did not pay attention to what I was saying. He was urging me to go for a week for rehabilitation, he said I would recover.

Promed employees do not inform that the purpose of the invitation is not testing, but sales. In addition, based on dubious analyses, they suggest that the client’s health situation is not good, so many of them could have started to worry unnecessarily. They refuse when the client wishes to withdraw from the contract that he/she signed at the presentation. Promed claims that the Consumer Rights Act, which concerns, inter alia, people buying at shows, does not apply to contracts for medical services. According to UOKiK, the statutory exclusion of the right of withdrawal does not apply to contracts concluded by Promed, because the presentation and tests are conducted by traders, not physicians. Clients have the right to resign from services without incurring costs within the period provided for by law, i.e. 14 days.

The punishment for Promed amounted to almost PLN 370,000 (PLN 369 985). The decision is not final. - We made the decision immediately enforceable. This means that Promed must change its practice promptly. The presentations of this company are attended by elderly people and they are being frightened by Promed with various diseases, only to make them sign a contract with the company. This is against the law and immoral – said Marek Niechciał, President of UOKiK.

Consumer assistance:

Phone +48 801 440 220 or +48 22 290 89 16 – consumer helpline
E-mail: [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnBs[ECODE]
Branches of the Consumers Federation
Consumer ombudsmen – in your town or district

Contact for the media:

UOKiK Press Office
pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa, Poland
Phone +48 695 902 088
E-mail: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]
Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

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