Holding Abusive Health Care Providers Accountable
Doctors, nurses and other practitioners in the health care field hold positions of trust in contemporary society. Few people expect them to commit acts of sexual abuse against anyone, let alone against their own patients. Unfortunately, sexual misconduct by physicians and other health care providers happens far too often.
At Horowitz Law, we understand this because we have worked with hundreds of people who suffered sexual abuse by trusted health care practitioners. Our sexual abuse lawyers have 20 combined years of experience holding Florida’s powerful individuals and health care facilities accountable for their misconduct.
Doctors Are Not Above Prosecution
A national investigation recently revealed more than 450 instances of doctors accused of sexual abuse. Many of the claims involved more than one victim – some involved multiple child victims. Stunningly, nearly half the accused perpetrators kept their licenses and remain in practice. This often gives abusers the mindset that they can continue to assault victims with impunity. Even as powerful professionals in other industries face serious consequences for sexual misconduct, doctors often seem exempt from criticism, let alone prosecution.
Sexual Misconduct In Health Care: What To Know
Victims tend to underreport misconduct by their doctors because they fear that no one will believe them. There are a few scenarios in which patients are particularly vulnerable to the abuse of health care practitioners:
- Procedures that require anesthesia
- Genital or pelvic exams
- Rectal exams
- Removal of hospital gowns
- Removal of undergarments
From the brave survivors – mostly women and children – who have come forward, we have learned that abuse by doctors and health care practitioners generally fall into three categories:
- Uninvited sexual contact
- Romantic or sexual relationships with current or former patients
- Initiating sexual contact by claiming it as a form of treatment
These acts all warrant civil lawsuits, criminal complaints or professional disciplinary proceedings. Although the odds can seem stacked against you, when victims come forward, they go a long way toward preventing the abuse of other patients. We are here to answer any of your questions about your unique situation as well, such as:
What Is Sexual Misconduct By A Doctor?
There are many ways that a doctor can cross the line and behave in a manner that engages in sexual misconduct. Some common examples of these actions include conducting a genital exam without gloves, insisting you disrobe for an exam that does not require it, refusing to have another person in the room during an intimate exam, or the doctor refusing to explain why they are conducting an exam.
What To Do If A Doctor Touches You Inappropriately?
The actions you take after an inappropriate encounter with your doctor can help ensure they are held accountable for their actions. After your incident, you can take actions like reporting it to the police, the doctor’s office, the hospital or facility where it happened, as well as the Florida medical licensing board. Lastly, contact us after reporting the abuse, so we can help you take further action to hold your abuser accountable.
Can You Sue A Doctor For Sexual Abuse Or Assault?
A victim of sexual abuse at a doctor’s office has the right to sue their abuser. Doctors can face both criminal and civil consequences for their actions against you, and it is worth looking into holding them accountable. We are here to stand by your side throughout your case to help you pursue the outcome you deserve in your case.
Hospitals and Medical Practices Are Also On The Hook
In addition to the individual practitioner, the hospital or medical practice could be held liable for victims’ damages. They may be accountable for failing to adequately screen new hires, failing to remove employees accused of misconduct, failing to properly manage accusations of abuse, and many more instances of negligence.
Stand Up To Abusive Medical Providers – Get A Free Consultation
If you suffered abuse at the hands of a doctor, nurse or other medical professional, Horowitz Law can represent you. We have extensive experience and success in handling cases of sexual assault by physicians. From our office in Fort Lauderdale, we represent victims nationwide. To schedule a free, confidential, no-risk consultation, please call us at 954-641-2100 or send us an email.