Would your M.D. hit on you? Are you sure?
A general practitioner was recently suspended for 18 months for making sexual advances to a patient while giving her a pelvic exam. After her appointment, Dr. Deepakkumar Vallabbai Patidar called the patient and asked her a second time for a date.
According to the annual report filed by the British Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, the patient's vaginal exam "did not meet the requisite standard of care and...was reasonably perceived as sexualized by the patient."
Patidar's suspension began June 30 and will end December 30, 2008. When he returns to practice, he cannot conduct pelvic or vaginal examinations and will have a chaperone present when he sees female patients who are required to undress. He will also be subject to counseling and monitoring.
Another GP named Tim Kom Wou also admitted he was guilty of "infamous and unprofessional conduct in exposing himself to two patients during physical examinations in 2004." He ended his practice and had his name erased from the register two years later.
And in 2006, Dr. James Norman Melling admitted his guilt in "engaging in a personal and sexual relationship with a patient and by continuing to prescribe narcotics and make referrals during that relationship," the report said.
The most recent incident involved Dr. Kevin Brown who was remanded in custody after facing 19 felony counts, including a lewd act on a 15-year-old, rape, sexual battery by fraud and sexual exploitation in court yesterday. At least one of the incidents occurred outside of Brown's medical office when he went to the home of a female patient and raped her. The Los Angeles Superior Court was also told seven more alleged victims of Brown's have come forward. If convicted, he faces up to 25 years in state prison.
Last year, the BC College of Physicians noted 28 sexual misconduct allegations of 24 different doctors. The college took action against nine doctors, and five of them were suspended.
What is inappropriate? Sometimes the boundaries aren't so clear. Click HERE for clues for whether your doctor is crossing the line.