Psychiatrist dating former patient

Code of Medical Ethics: Sexual boundaries Visit the Ethics main page to access additional Opinions, the Principles of Medical Ethics and more information about the Code of Medical Ethics.

Relationships between patients and psychiatrists are shaped by a complex array of factors.

Nagi Ghabbour failed to respond to the woman's escalating feelings for him while she was his patient and "clearly did not recognize his own part in it."The regulatory body says Ghabbour, 55, should have known how to manage the situation but instead chose to "pursue his own romantic needs."An agreed statement of facts shows the woman, who was married and had young children, sought treatment from him for anxiety and depression stemming from her work and marital difficulties.

The document says the woman announced she no longer wanted to be his patient about a year later amid concerns from her family over her relationship with -- and her own romantic feelings for -- the psychiatrist.

For the moment, we can exclude situations in which there is an erotic or sexualized transference or countertransference in play, and just focus on the problem that begins to arise when a genuine friendship is established.

Patient and psychiatrist have both played their societally defined roles as well as one can imagine.

At the same, however, patients and psychiatrists are unique and autonomous agents with emotional responses to one another that may evoke a wish for a personal friendship or other sorts of personal relationships that are outside the bounds of the usual professionally defined structures.

Ghabbour's lack of insight into the egregiousness of the misconduct, led the committee to decide that revocation is the only suitable penalty to fully protect the public," it said.

Ghabbour can apply for reinstatement in a year, which the committee said should give him an opportunity to show that he has learned how to prevent the same issues from arising again.

The treatment has worked and the patient’s condition has stabilized.

In the course of this development of a therapeutic alliance over months or years, the two parties have come to feel warmly, even lovingly, toward each other.

Leave a Reply