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Neurologist violates standards of care, loses license

In practically every healthcare setting, sexual relationships between a provider and a patient are banned. Despite this rule, a neurologist recently had his license revoked due to an inappropriate relationship that he engaged in with a patient. The New Jersey Medical Board determined that he had violated important standards of care during his misconduct.

Due to injuries that she suffered from a car wreck, one of his female patients was apparently left with a cognitive disorder and was also physically incapacitated. She became his patient in Aug. 2008, and the sexual contact began soon after. The medical board also asserts that, despite continuation of the patient’s seizures and other side effects of her disorder, the inappropriate relationship continued until March 2009.

The medical board effectively bans sexual relationships with patients in order to protect patients whose main goal is generally to heal. After the board determined that the sexual contact had occurred, they revoked his license to practice medicine in New Jersey. Additionally, he was also handed fines of nearly $45,000 and given a period of 30 days to transfer patients who are currently under his care to new healthcare providers.

This New Jersey neurologist is also banned from taking any new patients and is unable to apply for the reinstatement of his medical license for another three years. Despite his international status for bringing patients out of comas, violating a patient’s safety and security by engaging in a sexual relationship violates integral standards of care that are intended to ensure the safety of those seeking medical help. Patients who have suffered a similar violation by a healthcare provider may benefit from the successful litigation of a medical malpractice claim, which can provide financial recourse for any pain and suffering or additional medical bills accrued because of the misconduct.

Source: NY Daily News, "New Jersey neurologist's license revoked over having sexual contact with patient with brain injury", Joel Landau, June 15, 2014

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Alan D. Bell
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