A fake hospital for fictional internships
This is the somewhat absurd story that has been brought to light in part by the Ministry of Health and Social Services in collaboration with members of the Collège Supérieur de Montréal (CSM).
The company in question? Lyudas Hospital, which, according to internship reports consulted by Radio-Canada, would have hosted medical secretarial interns.
It would be in this area of northern Montreal, steps from the Rivière des Prairies and the real Albert-Prévost Mental Health Hospital, that CSM students would have welcomed patients and made appointments.
On paper, everything seems real. Lyudas Hospital was reportedly founded in 2003 and specializes in gynecology, in vitro fertilization and pediatric services. The establishment has a website with eye-catching illustrations and a lot of information that seems credible at first glance.
Even the Google search engine mentions its address and opening hours. And the LinkedIn page, which specializes in professional relations, lists an official from Lyudas Hospital whom we could not reach.
Because in reality none of this is true.
After receiving information per phone, MSSS conducted an inspection visit to verify the existence or not of Lyudas Hospital. This inspection enabled us to ascertain that there was no building at the said addressexplains Noémie Vanheuverzwijn, spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MSSS).
” No one knows about the existence of this hospital. »
Quebec was alerted by an employee of the Collège Supérieur de Montréal, the institution where the students were guilty of this deception. He also contacted Radio-Canada, claiming he had not been heard by his management.
The director of CSM, a subsidized private institution offering short courses, claims to have communicated
proactively with Quebec and the City of Montreal to condemn this
non-existent entity from September 2022.
” Then we banned immediately [le Lyudas Hospital] and the related courses were immediately cancelled. »
We attach great importance to the validity of these internships, as the integrity of the education we offer and the reputation of the College are at stake. […] which maintains excellent relations with the professional community which continuously employs our graduates to meet their human resource needsargues Noureddine Hajibi in a written statement sent to Radio-Canada.
How many fake internships have been done? The establishment claims not to have
precise numbers to communicate and swear to do
as much as possible to check
that the students are actually in practice.
It was only after a series of questions from Radio-Canada sent to CSM College and Quebec in recent days that Google put an end to the IPO of Lyudas Hospital. The page has been suspended.
“This was not done at the request of the MSSS,” points out Noémie Vanheuverzwijn.
A network of fake websites orchestrated from Africa
Before it was suspended, Lyudas Hospital’s website had several elements that led to believe it was part of a network of fraudulent websites.
In the HTML code of the site we could see several references to a hospital in the UK with the name
Corbyn Hospital, as well as a link to its website. This site no longer exists, but several negative reviews found online indicate that it is a fake hospital that was used in a fake job offer scam.
The supposed photos of Lyudas Hospital that were on his website led us to another fake hospital, Memorial Hospital, this one allegedly located in California and Texas, and whose website is identical to Lyudas’s.
Using DomainTool’s analysis tool, we were able to find about 20 other websites associated with Memorial Hospital, including several other fake hospitals, fake law firms, fake banks, and fake companies. Another of the sites that are part of this network claims to be able to offer work and study visas to Canada. Its Facebook page states that the company is located in Nigeria.
Also, a site showing scams targeting Africans contains several notices about sites that are part of this network. It is explained that these sites steal money from victims by offering fake job offers abroad for a fee.
raredepending on the college
Other foreign students, registered at CSM College, have tried to complete fictitious internships.
Several fraud attempts have been thwarted by our servicesacknowledges the director of the college.
We have increased our vigilance and have taken measures to ban certain companies.
irregularity was discovered, for example, with the CISSS de la Montérégie-Est, he confirms.
According to the health institute, two students tried a few months ago to pretend they had completed their training at the Pierre-Boucher hospital.
We have received a request for verification from an employee of CSM College who is no longer employed by them.says Caroline Doucet, spokesperson for CISSS.
This specifies that the CISSS has
insisted with the college on the importance of validating internship requests with the Department of University Education and Research
as is the case with all businesses.
However, there was no actual trainee file from the Collège CSM in Pierre-Boucher.
CSM College, for its part, swears by having one
strict verification process.
Despite our diligent control, it is impossible to completely exclude that some among each year’s graduating students have managed to escape our supervision and break the rules, continues Noureddine Hajibi. However, such cases would be rare and it is important to emphasize that CSM in no way condoned, permitted, participated in or favored such a situation.