Monday, 8 May 2017

Doctors who sexually molest their patients deserved to be removed from their professions. (part 1)
The relationship between a doctor and his or her patient is so intimate, only a patient’s spouse or other sexual partner exceeds that intimacy.

When a doctor or dentist sexually molests his patient, there can only be one punishment other that fines and costs that is appropriate and that is the permanent revocation of their licences to practice in their professions.

Some people will say that in some instances the sexual molestation of a patient is so minor; the licences of the offenders should be suspended for a period of time rather than be revoked permanently.

On May 4, 2017, the Toronto Star published an article about a massage therapist who was charged with sexually groping a female patient in 2014. The patient was an undercover investigator with the College of Message Therapists of Ontario. The results of the investigation wasn’t dealt with at the College’s disciplinary Committee. He was able to continue being a licenced therapist. Then in 2016, there were three more complaints filed with the police with respect to him groping those new patents.

If your child was sexually molested by a school teacher, would you be satisfied that the teacher is only suspended and is later permitted to return to her class where your child is a student? Why should your child be force to go to another school so that your child won’t be in the same class as his or her convicted molester is teaching? 

Suppose you are living in a small town where the molesting doctor is the only doctor in that town. How would you feel if you have to see a doctor again and the molester is the only doctor you can visit?
Now I will give you a case where a sexual molesting doctor commit his crimes on his patients.

In the field of medicine, anesthesiologists hold a rather unique position—their associations with their patients are typically very brief, but vitally important. They are responsible for keeping people alive and breathing while they are sedated and paralyzed, reliant on machines to keep them from dying. And now I will tell you about the doctor I am writing about in this article.

Dr. George Doodnaught

This Guyanese born doctor was practicing medicine in the district of North York (part of Toronto) as an anesthesiologist in the North York General Hospital. He sexually assaulted at least 21 partially conscious female patients while surgical teams operated on them just centimeters (inches) away from him. He was obviously a serial sexual molester of women.       Of  all of the 21 complaints, only one of the doctor’s  molestations didn’t occur at the North York General Hospital in Toronto between 2006 and 2010.

Blocked from view by a “sterile sheet,” this molester abused their upper bodies while unsuspecting nurses and surgeons worked on their lower bodies.

The assaults reported by all the women were similar, generally involving a combination of Doodnaught kissing them, fondling their breasts and putting his penis in their mouths or hand while they were partially conscious. That he did this in an operating room, a place of ultimate trust is difficult to understand and frankly, shocking to say the least.

The trial judge said that his patients were sedated, passive and disinhibited, The judge also found that the doctor had control over the patients’ level of anesthesia and would have known that they could not openly resist. He relied on the amnesiac effects of the drugs to shield him from any of his patient’s complaints.

The height and width of surgical draping would have rendered it “difficult if not impossible” for others in the operating room to see what the anesthetist was doing to his patients.

The drugs he administered put the women in a state of “conscious sedation” —a twilight state between consciousness and unconsciousness. He also gave them spinal painkillers, which numbed portions of their bodies. That may very well have been necessary for the kind of operations they needed. But if it was given to stop them from removing his hand from their intimate parts of their bodies, then that was criminal.

In February 2006, a 55-year-old woman complained Doodnaught pinched her nipples and caressed her breasts under her hospital gown, while surgeons worked on a knee replacement.

Dr. Derek Shilletto, the hospital’s acting head of anesthesiology, promised the complainant that he would put the patient’s complaint on Doodnaught’s personnel file and he would be closely scrutinized. Dr. Shilletto warned Doodnaught to be “very careful in his approach to his patients.

In December, 2008, a 48-year-old woman complained after she woke up being kissed. She was then forced to perform oral sex on the doctor when he thrust his penis in her mouth. He also fondled her breasts, saying he would later “give her a good fuck.” She should have bitten his penis real hard to the point that he would have screamed while her teeth were still holding his penis in her mouth. The surgeons and nurses would have seen what the doctor was really doing to the woman under his care.

In January 2009, she contacted police, who launched an investigation. No member of the hospital told the police there had been two previous complaints of sexual assault against George Doodnaught. No charges were laid at that time.

In January 2010, a 62-year-old woman complained to her surgeon, Dr. Robert Brock, after Doodnaught massaged her breasts and kissed her lips “like a lover.” Brock confirmed to the police that he received the complaint but took no action.

A 40-year-old mother of twins came in February 2010 for a hysterectomy. During the operation, she realized Doodnaught’s hands were under her gown, fondling her bare breasts. He French kissed her and put his penis into her mouth, moving it slowly, rhythmically.

After the charges were made public, other women came forward with similar stories, some also describing forced masturbation and fellatio.

His approach, particularly with female patients, was to soothe them by speaking softly to them and often by stroking their cheek or their hair.  Come to me said the spider to the fly. Doodnaught was a sexual opportunist who timed his assaults with precision to avoid getting caught. He claimed that he was motivated by the excitement and risk of being caught at what he was doing to the women. That part of his statement is believable.

Most of the 21 victims took the stand against Doodnaught. They gave generally similar accounts of being kissed and fondled by him, and of having his penis placed into the mouths of eight women.  The women testified they were conscious enough to be aware of what was happening, but could not move their limbs.

Following two more of the complaints, Dr. Steven Brown told Doodnaught not to use Ketamine, a sedative sometimes associated with hallucinations since Doodnaught was using that drug as an alibi, claiming that the patients who complained were only imagining these sexual assaults they claimed he was doing on them.

A Toronto court found Dr. George Doodnaught guilty of sexually assaulting 21 women while they were under conscious sedation in a hospital. The verdict was handed down in a packed courtroom shortly after 10 a.m. in November 2013, bringing tears to the eyes of many of the victims present for the decision. Some people could be heard sighing with relief or whispering "yes.”

Doodnaught’s lawyer argued the female patients were actually having vivid dreams while under sedation, and that it would have been physically impossible for him to molest them from his position behind a surgical screen in the operating room, but the judge rejected those arguments. Judge David McCombs of Ontario Superior Court found Doodnaught's guilt on all counts "as overwhelming."

Doodnaught declined the opportunity to make a statement before he was sentenced, which tells you something about how rotten a man he is. Despite that, his lawyer said outside the court that that his client continued to enjoy widespread support not only with his family but amongst his colleagues and patients.” Did any of them come to the court to testify on his behalf?

In passing sentence, the judge said, “The profound psychological impact of the physical violations has been compounded by the victims' deep feelings of betrayal that these offences were committed during surgery, by a medical doctor, in an operating room, a place of ultimate vulnerability and trust.”

The judge said, “I have found that they were conscious and aware during significant parts of their surgeries, and were able to recall these shocking and abhorrent events.”

Despite further complaints against Dr. George Doodnaught, the hospital didn’t open his file again until March 22, 2010 — more than two weeks after he was arrested on three counts of sexual assault against his patients.

North York General CEO Tim Rutledge spoke hours after the verdict was reached and said the hospital has taken steps to prevent similar incidents of patient abuse. The hospital should have acted as soon as the first complaint was filed with the hospital. This wasn’t done. It was more or less swept under the carpet.  Rutledge also said, "We are troubled by this, we are regretful that this happened," he said. "We are taking steps to ensure this never happens again."  If they acted immediately after the first compl;aint was brought to their attention, there wouldn’t have been 20 more patients abused by that doctor.   The indifference by senior people in the hospital is what made it possible for Dr. Doodnaught to continue molesting his patients. . A German adage is worth repeating. “Too smart, too late.”

On February 25, 2014, this disreputable doctor was sentenced to ten years in prison for his outrageous sexual assaults on his patients. Under Canadian law, he would be eligible to parole after serving one third or two thirds of his sentence.  I couldn’t find anything written about this man’s release from prison. He is probably still currently in prison.

While he was waiting for his sentencing, he filed an appeal with the Ontario Court of Appeal to be released on bail. His appeal was denied for release from custody.  Further, I found no other record of an appeal heard by the Ontario Court of Appeal under this man’s name.

George Doodnaught’s certificate of registration was later revoked by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. 

There was a failure in this case to protect the patients from this serial molester of women.  Had the hospital acted as soon as they received the first complaint, instead of sweeping the complaint under the rug, the 20 other patients wouldn’t have suffered from the molestations of this evil doctor.

It is an unfortunate fact of life that there are still sexual predators in hospitals, clinics and doctor’s offices.  Unfortunately, you won’t know that when you are alone with such a doctor and no one else.  Fortunately, the very vast number of doctors are not sexual predators. But then you can walk into a forest and in almost all times, you won’t be attacked by a grizzly bear, but then….. 

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