A Brisbane GP has been suspended from practice for 15 months for having a sexual relationship with a patient that lasted two years.
A prominent Brisbane sports doctor has been suspended from practice for having an affair with a female patient he was treating for depression.
Neville Blomeley began a relationship with the woman during a consultation after she told him about intimacy problems in her marriage.
Dr Blomeley continued to treat the woman during their affair which lasted two years, between November 2010 and July 2012.
When the woman complained to the Medical Board of Australia, he admitted the relationship, spoke of his shame and offered to apologise.
The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) heard Dr Blomeley was having difficulties in his own marriage when he started the affair with his patient of 10 years.
She was vulnerable and the relationship adversely affected her mental health, the tribunal was told.
It found Dr Blomeley’s conduct was a fundamental breach.
“It was his special duty, not the patient’s to maintain the appropriate professional boundaries,” the QCAT judgment read.
“Dr Blomeley’s maintenance of a sexual relationship with his patient was substantially below the standard of conduct reasonably expected of a registered medical health practitioner.”
The tribunal ordered Dr Blomeley be suspended from practising as a GP for 15 months, from July 1.
Dr Blomeley has practised for 37 years and been a registered GP since 1995.
He was a medical officer for the Queensland Academy of Sport and has held positions with Queensland Cricket and the Brisbane Roar football club.
As a result of the woman’s complaint, Dr Blomeley stood down from his chairman position with the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners and resigned from the Queensland Academy of Sport.
He also gave up his position at Queensland Cricket.
Dr Blomeley will have to be supervised while treating female patients for 12 months when he resumes practising in October 2015.
He was also ordered to pay costs.