Alabama Doctor Sexual Misconduct: Can Medical Staff Be Sued?
If a doctor, nurse or other trusted medical professional engages in sexual misconduct with a patient, this crosses not only ethical boundaries that might land them before the state medical board, but can also lead to civil liability.
And those civil claims aren't limited to the physician. They can be filed against the doctor's employer or contracting agency, hospital, or clinic. Patients who are victimized by doctor sexual misconduct should speak with a Mobile medical malpractice attorney to better understand their legal options.
There are a number of laws regulating the duty of health care professionals to their patients. Physicians are held to a high standard because of the imbalance of power between a doctor and a patient. Additionally, sexual misconduct is a violation of the public trust that is placed in medical professionals.
Holes in the System Allow Deviant Doctors to Slide
Part of the reason why these cases happen in the first place is because of systemic loopholes that prevent public transparency of past misdeeds, allowing predatory physicians to continue their practice with limited consequences.
AL.com recently reported on a pediatrician who has a clean record with the Alabama State Board of Medical Examiners. There is one notation indicating that in 2009, he voluntarily surrendered his medical license while under investigation with the board, but no other details are provided. Yet an internet search of his name during that time found that he had allegedly engaged in sexual misconduct with a minor.
Even before this happened, he'd been accused of misconduct on three prior occasions, and he'd been fired multiple times for misconduct. He was able to halt the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners' investigation against him by voluntarily surrendering his license.
The local news reporter found that there are approximately 16,000 individuals with active medical licenses in this state - and there is absolutely no way for the public to know how many of those are under investigation.
When patients place trust in doctors and medical professionals, they should receive the best care possible. Those found responsible for sexual misconduct against patients should be held accountable for their actions. If you or a loved one has fall victim to such behavior, it is crucial that you speak to an experienced medical malpractice attorney immediately.