For most people who check into a hospital or go to a clinic for medical care, the amount of time actually spent with doctors is quite small. Instead, in most cases it is nurses or nurse practitioner who take patient history and obtain basic medical information. Because of this, as is the case with doctors, there is a fair amount of trust placed in the hands of these medical professionals. In most cases that trust is well placed. Other times however, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania residents may find that they have been taken advantage of, abused or on the receiving end of negligent care.
A nurse practitioner in another state is facing criminal charges for the way in which he treated patients. The 64-year-old man is accused of sexually assaulting four patients. At the arraignment, earlier this month it was indicated that the assaults occurred as the man performed gynecological exams.
The alleged sexual assaults took place between 2010 and 2012. At least some of the man’s accusers reported the incidents to the clinic but no action was taken until this month when he was arrested. This is not the first time that the man has been accused of problem behaviors. Previously, his nursing license and certificates were on probation after he was found guilty of gross negligence and incompetence.
Medical providers are expected to provide a certain level of care. When the care received does not live up to those expectations, it is possible that a medical malpractice claim could be filed. Allegations of sexual assault should always be taken seriously. If it is true that the community health center that received complaints regarding the man’s behavior failed to take action, it is possible it could be held liable in a civil court via a medical malpractice lawsuit. At this point it is unclear whether such a lawsuit will be filed.
Source: Hanford Sentinel, “Accused nurse once faced license suspension,” Joe Johnson, Aug. 27, 2013