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Psychiatrist Sued for Sex Abuse of Patient: Calgary

The Alberta College of Physicians and Surgeons has released a decision that it has revoked the medical licence of psychiatrist Jeremy Roberts.

Roberts was accused of “professional negligence and sexual abuse.” A hearing found he had an inappropriate relationship with a patient that included sexual activity. The woman was not identified. The Alberta College’s policy regarding doctor/patient sexual contact can be found here.

The Calgary Herald has reported that the patient that filed the complaint has filed a lawsuit against Roberts seeking compensation for sexual abuse.

The Herald reports that the plaintiff’s Statement of Claim alleges that the woman went to see Roberts for treatment of anxiety, marital stress and postpartum depression. The woman had two young children and was still married when she first visited Roberts in January 2003.

Secret Marriage:

Ten months later, the woman alleges in the statement of claim, she and Roberts had sex in his office. They married in July 2005. It was only when the woman was hospitalized for harming herself, the statement of claim says, that she revealed the secret relationship.

Although Roberts has been disciplined by the College of Physicians, the facts alleged in the statement of claim have not been proven in court.

Doctor-Patient Sexual Abuse is a Persistent Problem:

This story points to a continuing problem. In a previous post I noted that the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons “regularly” deals with allegations of sexual abuse by doctors.

In 2002 the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons disciplined Dr. Russell Harold Frith and in 2004 they disciplined Dr. Charles Larry Leatherdale.

The Canadian Medical Association Journal has reported that in a survey of 792 Obstetricians and Gynaecologists across Canada 10% of the respondents indicated that they knew about another ob-gyn who at some time had been sexually involved with a patient!

For more information about civil claims for sexual abuse click here.