A senior NHS doctor who was accused of having affairs with two patients has been cleared after a disciplinary panel found the investigation ‘defective’.
Dr Richard MacCallum, 54, was said to have had sexual trysts with both women after they were admitted to A&E departments following unrelated falls.
The married father-of-two, whose wife is a dentist, was accused of buying chocolates and cola for one of the women and of meeting up with the other one for sex.
Dr Richard MacCallum, 54, (pictured leaving his hearing today in Manchester) was said to have had sexual trysts with two female patients after they were admitted to A&E departments following unrelated falls
MacCallum, a consultant at Stirling Royal Infirmary in Scotland, was reported to health officials in November 2016 by the daughter of one of the women, a 63-year old referred to as Patient B.
He was then investigated over his relationship with the other woman known as Patient A when her stepmother read about Patient B in a newspaper.
Patient A died in 2015 aged 50.
At the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service, MacCallum, who lives in the town of Dollar near Stirling, faced being struck off over a string of misconduct charges involving both women between 2008 and 2016.
MacCallum, a consultant at Stirling Royal Infirmary in Scotland, was reported to health officials in November 2016 by the daughter of one of the women, a 63-year old referred to as Patient B
But nearly all the charges were found not proved after a fitness to practise panel criticised NHS Fort Valley over ‘notable defects’ in its investigation.
The hearing was told interviews were carried out with multiple witnesses present and they were shown an old photograph of the doctor which had been used in media reports about him.
Associate Medical director Dr Henry Robb who was in charge of the probe was also banned from speaking to Dr MacCallum and his colleagues. even though they could have provided key evidence to refute the claims.
MacCallum himself later produced a receipt from Celtic football club proving he was on duty at a match on the day he had allegedly met up with Patient A for sex.
He also denied claims by Patient B he had molested her on a hospital ward saying a nurse was working alongside him at all times.
She initially claimed she had been kissed by the doctor when being treated at the hospital but then made allegations she had been sexually assaulted. The hearing was told Patient B had been an alcoholic who was in a state of withdrawal at the time.
At the Manchester hearing, panel chairman Sean Ell said: ‘The Tribunal had no evidence before it to support the nature of the relationship between Patient A and Dr MacCallum.
‘Dr MacCallum’s evidence was that the contact with Patient A only started sometime after she had been to A&E, when they bumped into one another.
‘Patient A and Dr MacCallum had also been acquainted when they were both teenagers.
‘Dr MacCallum stated that he returned Patient A’s calls and texts and accepted that he had attended her address on one occasion, but that the contact was not inappropriate, and contact had been initiated by Patient A.’
The Tribunal also found that Patient B changed her account of what happened and gave different versions to different people.
He was found guilty of attempting to call Patient B from hospital after her daughter confronted him about the texts. He will face a further hearing about the calls next month
The panel also said they kept in mind Patient B’s mental state and her withdrawal from alcohol as factors relevant to her credibility.
Mr Ell added: ‘Given the circumstances, it found it extremely unlikely that Dr MacCallum would attend Patient B’s hospital room other than for clinical purposes.
‘The Tribunal had oral and testimonial evidence that such an act as alleged was so far out of Dr MacCallum’s normal behaviour that his colleagues were dismayed by this allegation.’
During the hearing Patient B claimed MacCallum touched and kissed her after she was taken by her two daughters to the A&E department at Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert having fallen at home in October 2016. She claimed they later met up at his her home for sex.
She said: ‘Sex is about being nice, love, feeling good about yourself with a partner who would want it. ‘But with him it didn’t come across like that to me. It was just him, him, him. If he got sex that is what he wanted. Foreplay? There was nothing like that. It was always in the morning he arrived for some reason and on one occasion he arrived later at night.
‘I can remember him kissing me and I kissed him back but all he wanted was sex. What surprised me was all my birthday cards were sitting there on the mantelpiece and he made no comment about whose birthday is it or anything like that. There was no love or anything attached to it.’
‘It was the fact that I had just come out of a divorce after 32 years of marriage, you just want to feel wanted and needed type of thing I just thought here’s someone paying attention and it was nice.’
MacCallum admitted texting Patient B but claimed most had been sent to her in error due to a fault with his mobile phone.
He sent one saying: ‘Everybody falls over don’t worry get back up and onwards you are strong’ and insisted he had been to trying to support her.
He was found guilty of attempting to call Patient B from hospital after her daughter confronted him about the texts. He will face a further hearing about the calls next month.