Dating a patient ethics
Sexual or romantic relationships with former patients are unethical if the physician uses or exploits trust, knowledge, emotions, or influence derived from the previous professional relationship." Note that this last statement leaves open the possibility that such relations might not be unethical if the physician doesn't exploit aspects of the former relationship.Also, the AMA is silent here about former lovers becoming current patients. Colorado's Medical Practice Act specifies a six-month "waiting period" after a professional relationship has ceased before a sexual one may begin.Like the AMA, Colorado doesn't specify how long after a romantic relationship ceases a medical one might begin, stating only that they must not be "concurrent." Other states address — or do not address — this issue with varying degrees of explicitness.Mental health professionals set even stricter standards.
According to the American Psychiatric Association: "Sexual activity with a current or former patient is unethical....In an effort to refine how the "no overlap" principle should be applied, I'd like to throw a small monkey wrench at this naively simplistic construct.