Profiles and institutional context of doctors who sexually abuse their patients or colleagues

Melville-Wiseman, J. (2013) Profiles and institutional context of doctors who sexually abuse their patients or colleagues. In: Interpersonal Violence Interventions - Social and Cultural Perspectives. International Conference,, August 28-30 2013, University of Jyväskylä, Finland.

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In 2009 the UK regulatory body for doctors, the General Medical Council (GMC), reported that 25% of the total number of cases heard under their fitness to practice (FtP) procedures involved sexual contact with a patient. This is much higher than the numbers reported by the UK Nursing and Midwifery Council of 2% of concluded conduct cases in 2011-12 but lower than those reported by the General Social Care Council (the former regulatory body for UK social workers) of 40% between 2003 and 2008. To date there has been very littler research in the UK in this area looking at the specific institutional context of such abuse, the profile of perpetrators, the experiences of victims or whether regulatory responses are effective (Melville-Wiseman 2013).

This paper reports on research in progress into doctors who have been brought before the (GMC) under their FtP procedures for issues that relate to sexually motivated offences committed in the context of their practice. This includes the sexual abuse of a patient and sexual abuse or harassment of a colleague. The paper identifies the gender dynamics of perpetrators and victims; the length of time since qualification; the location of initial qualifying training and institutional context at the time of the allegations. It also identifies whether regulatory responses are effective and consistent.

The paper concludes with recommendations for initial and post qualifying training for doctors on sexual boundary issues, recommendations for further research into the impact of such abuse on victims and argues for a review of our regulatory bodies and their powers to intervene.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV6001 Criminology > HV6251 Crimes and offences > HV6569 Sex crimes
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0399 Regulation of medical practice. Evaluation and quality control of medical care. Medical audit. Clinical governance
Divisions: Faculty of Health and Wellbeing > School of Public Health, Midwifery and Social Work
Depositing User: Dr Janet Melville-Wiseman
Date Deposited: 16 Apr 2015 08:44
Last Modified: 16 Apr 2015 08:50

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00