Posted May 17, 2010 05:58 pm CDT
Now charged with more than 500 sex offenses, a Delaware pediatrican was the the subject of complaints dating back to 1994 that he had acted inappropriately with young female patients.
Yet medical professionals, including at least one prominent physician colleague, apparently didn’t take the allegations against Dr. Earl Bradley seriously, making excuses for him and and missing opportunities to help appropriate authorities pursue investigations, reports the Wilmington News Journal. The article relies on court documents and a report by Widener University School of Law Dean Linda Ammons.
Under Delaware law, physicians who “reasonably believe” a fellow doctor has been involved in misconduct or could be unfit to practice medicine have a duty to report this to a disciplinary board, according to the newspaper.
“It’s very baffling,” says Ammons, referring to one prominent physician colleague who apparently didn’t take the accusations against Bradley seriously. Thinking that Bradley was an excellent doctor, she suspects, the colleague either “completely missed all of the signs, or may have seen signs and suspended belief.”
Tort cases are now being pursued by families of some of Dr. Bradley’s patients. As discussed in an earlier ABAJournal.com post about the case, his lawyer has said, referencing videotaped evidence in the case, that he expects Bradley’s defense to focus on “his mental health at the time.”