Psychiatrist Ong Ming Tan facing 7 indecency charges involving teenage patients

February 20, 2012

A Sydney psychiatrist has been accused of molesting a second patient at a private north shore clinic, with police today laying a further 10 charges of indecent and sexual assault.

Dr Ong Ming Tan today faced Hornsby Local Court where police presented further charges following their investigation into the doctor's behaviour at the high-profile Northside Clinic.

Police originally laid charges in relation to a 19-year-old patient, but Dr Tan has since been charged with a number of fresh charges in relation to his conduct with a second complainant, aged 29.

In total, he how faces seven counts of aggravated indecency with a victim 16 or over and under his authority, and seven counts of aggravated indecency, victim under the authority of the offender.

As originally reported in The Sun-Herald, Dr Tan, 38, had been under investigation by both police and the state's public health regulator over his conduct with patients at the Greenwich clinic.

He has taken leave from his private rooms while the investigations continue, and declined to speak to The Sun-Herald about the claims when they were first raised.

The chief executive of the Northside Group, Anne Mortimer, told the Herald it had taken action within one hour of being informed of the allegations.

She said the allegations had been raised before Christmas while the psychiatrist was on leave.

"We took immediate action," Ms Mortimer said. "We had a meeting within an hour and [the doctor] did not return to the clinic. He chose to take annual leave."

She said the matter was immediately reported to the commission as well as the clinic's medical advisory board. An internal investigation had also been launched.

Ms Mortimer said she was not surprised a complaint had been made to police because she could understand anyone who felt they had been a victim would be outraged and likely to take all available avenues.

"We take these matters very seriously and we are co-operating with all agencies," Ms Mortimer said. "We are keen to get to the bottom of all this. Our primary motivation is always our patients. And these patients are incredibly vulnerable."

The Northside Clinic has 92 beds. It is a teaching hospital for the University of Sydney and has a number of specialised treatment units that deal with mood disorders, drug and alcohol detoxification and rehabilitation, and eating disorders.

Dr Tan was present for the brief mention of the case today, which was adjourned to May.

Source: Lisa Davies, "More psychiatrist sex claims emerge at private Sydney clinic," Sydney Morning Herald, February 15, 2012.


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