BREACHING THE SEXUAL BOUNDARIES IN THE DOCTOR-PATIENT RELATIONSHIP: SHOULD ENGLISH LAW RECOGNISE FIDUCIARY DUTIES?Med Law Rev 2016; 24(2):206-33ML
In this article, I argue that sexual exploitation in the doctor-patient relationship would be dealt with more appropriately by the law in England and Wales on the basis of a breach of fiduciary duty. Three different types of sexual boundary breaches are discussed, and the particular focus is on breaches where the patient's consent is obtained through inducement. I contend that current avenues of redress do not clearly catch this behaviour and, moreover, they fail to capture the essence of the wrong committed by the doctor-the knowing breach of trust for self-gain-and the calculated way in which consent is induced. Finally, I demonstrate that the fiduciary approach is compatible with the contemporary pro-patient autonomy model of the doctor-patient relationship.