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No conflict of interest over GP’s affair with patient’s wife

6 February 2009

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The General Medical Council (GMC) has ruled that a GP who had an affair with the wife of a patient is not guilty of a “conflict of interest”.

The woman who Dr Henry Kinch had an affair with was also his patient, as well as an employee at the surgery in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex.

Dr Kinch treated the woman’s husband, known as Mr B, as a patient while having an affair with his wife, but denied a conflict of interest.

A GMC panel sitting in Manchester determined that there was no conflict of interest arising out of the doctor’s relationship with Mrs B because it could not be proved that he was engaged in a sexual and emotional relationship with Mrs B when he had a consultation with her husband.

The GMC heard that Mrs B worked as his research assistant on drug trial tests at the Dr Lawton and Partners Surgery. She left the surgery in April last year and Dr Kinch said that he has since returned to his wife.

Dr Kinch admitted that engaging in a sexual relationship with Mrs B while she was his patient was inappropriate and had brought the medical profession into disrepute.

The GMC panel will now consider whether Dr Kinch’s fitness to practise is impaired.

Copyright © Press Association 2009


Related article: What should you do if you suspect a GP in your practice is overstepping sexual boundaries with patients?