Disciplinary complaint of interns: BIG registration internist has been cancelled

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Disciplinary complaint of interns: BIG registration internist has been cancelled

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The Regional Disciplinary Court in Amsterdam has canceled the registration in the BIG register of the internist who behaved (sexually) in a cross-border manner towards three interns. They filed a complaint against him.

Today, the Regional Disciplinary Court for Healthcare (RTG) in Amsterdam announced that it is canceling the BIG registration of the internist. Three Erasmus MC interns filed a complaint against the internist because of (sexual) transgressive behavior during an extra teaching moment. Ultrasound examination of the groin and pubic area was practiced here. The internist was then working at the Maasstad Hospital in Rotterdam.

Unacceptable

The RTG concludes: ‘The manner in which the internist treated the complainants is incomprehensible and unacceptable. In doing so, he abused and betrayed the complainants’ trust and damaged their mental health. The internist has also undermined the quality of individual healthcare with his behavior as a trainer of interns. Moreover, the internist has not shown the insight, even at the hearing, that his behavior is completely unacceptable.’ Under the guise of a physical examination, the internist behaved (sexually) transgressively, such as unsolicited and unannounced touching of the pubic area and secretly made video recordings, according to the college. The accused internist can appeal against the verdict.

Justifiably

Hanneke ten Hag, medical student in Utrecht and graduated as a lawyer in health law, can follow the reasoning of the disciplinary committee well. ‘I think the statement is correct. The board says that the behavior affects individual health care because it concerns a medical specialist who explains to future doctors how to do the research, while doing it in such a wrong way.
Although she thinks the verdict is justified, she is also surprised. ‘It is the first time that interns have filed a disciplinary complaint about transgressive behaviour. I could also have imagined that the disciplinary committee would say: this belongs more in criminal law.’

To address

Nynke Nubé, a student in Leiden, internal commissioner of the Medical Student (DG) and member of the DG Undesirable Behavior project group, also thinks the statement is justified. ‘This shows, both to interns, to doctors and to other care providers, that there are consequences if transgressive behavior takes place; if that happens to you or if you do.’
In addition to reporting (sexual) transgressive behaviour, it is important, according to Nubé, that ‘colleagues address each other about this behaviour’. ‘As an intern we can focus on reporting, but the most important thing is that this kind of behavior should not happen.’
Ten Hag: ‘I think it is important that the disciplinary tribunal has taken this path. Interns I spoke to about this all indicated that they knew someone who had experienced something that was unacceptable. I can imagine that this statement can be supportive for them.’

Unique

This ruling relates to the hearing that took place on 10 February. Medical Contact was present together with Ten Hag and Nubé. Earlier, a spokesperson for the disciplinary tribunals indicated that it is ‘probably quite unique’ that interns file a complaint against a trainer/supervisor.

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