The physician-patient relationship is sacred – or it should be. In Grand Rapids, Michigan a group of rowdy Ob/Gyn residents posted photographs of patient tissue, during surgery, to their Instragram accounts. The photographs featured such things as who could find the longest string of fibrous tissue, and “The Price is Right” rules for guessing the weight of your patient (i.e., you can guess, but if your weight guess is “over”, you lose).
These physicians may have had a lot of medical training, but they apparently skipped the ethics portion.
This is a rather stunning lack of professionalism toward patients. Physicians have a duty of professional care to their patients and the patients have the right to consent (fully) to any plan of care. The residents are now in hot water with the administration in their residency programs, but the long-term impact of this behavior could be significant for the physician-patient relationships of those involved. It is not currently known if any of the patients faces appear in the operating room shenanigans because the photos were quickly taken down from Instagram. Regardless, this type of conduct is deeply disturbing and raises a lot of other potential questions about how patients are treated and valued by some in the medical profession.
A Michigan native who graduated from both Michigan State University and Cooley Law School, Mr. Weidenfeller has limited his practice of law to representing individuals who have been permanently injured and families who have lost a loved one as the result of medical errors for more than 20 years. In that time, he has been featured on the cover of Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly and has spoken to many and varied professional groups about trial practice and effective communication.