Yes, romantic or sexual relationships with patients can be malpractice for medical practitioners. The balance of power in the professional relationship between a doctor or therapist and a patient makes a sexual relationship highly suspect and unethical. Generally yes, any sexual conduct with a patient is considered malpractice , whether or not the patient consented to the conduct. Consent is not a valid defense to malpractice.
Sexual Relationships With Patients
Ethics of Nurse/Patient Relationships - Patient / Colleague Relations - allnurses
Katherine H Hall, Sexualization of the doctor—patient relationship: is it ever ethically permissible? Whilst having sexual relationships with current patients is clearly unethical, the ethics of such a relationship between a doctor and former patient is more debatable. In this review of the current evidence, based on major articles listed in Medline and Bioethicsline in the past 15 years, the argument is made here that such relationships are almost always unethical due to the persistence of transference, the unequal power distribution in the original doctor—patient relationship and the ethical implications that arise from both these factors especially with respect to the patient's autonomy and ability to consent, even when a former patient. Only in very particular circumstances could such relationships be ethically permissible. Hall KH. Sexualization of the doctor—patient relationship: is it ever ethically permissible?
Doctors dating patients?
ABSTRACT: The physician-patient relationship is damaged when there is either confusion regarding professional roles and behavior or clear lack of integrity that allows sexual exploitation and harm. Sexual contact or a romantic relationship between a physician and a current patient is always unethical, and sexual contact or a romantic relationship between a physician and a former patient also may be unethical. The request by either a patient or a physician to have a chaperone present during a physical examination should be accommodated regardless of the physician's sex. If a chaperone is present during the physical examination, the physician should provide a separate opportunity for private conversation. Physicians aware of instances of sexual misconduct have an obligation to report such situations to appropriate authorities.
During my last job, one of my regular patients and I seemed to hit it off I was pleasant and friendly, but kept it professional. I definitely felt the tension and I think we both knew there was some chemistry there.