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May 26, 1999

Care of Prison Inmates by Impaired Disciplined Physicians—Reply

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMD, Deputy EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Interim CoeditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1999;281(20):1889-1891. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-281-20-jbk0526

In Reply: Drs Cherry and Aufderheide have contributed constructively to the discussion regarding disciplined and impaired physicians in correctional facilities. However, as even they may agree, the correctional setting is not necessarily a good place for rehabilitating physicians with a history of abusing patients. As Dr Wolfe stated, "the recidivism rate for sexual offenders is too high to risk the health and welfare of patients by recycling physicians who may offend again. Because prisoners are powerless and vulnerable to exploitation, we need to be careful not to place them under the care of health professionals who have a history of victimizing patients."1

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