A suspended Brisbane surgeon wants the right to respond to sexual and professional misconduct allegations levelled against him in state parliament.
Health officials are delving into the conduct of Dr William Braun after Opposition MP Ros Bates tabled letters in which medical practitioners made a range of complaints about him.
Dr Braun has now written to parliamentary Speaker Curtis Pitt saying the letters had done irreparable damage to his reputation and asking to tell parliament his side of the story.
“At no point have I been given an opportunity to provide wider context around what I believe to be a related issue, which is a coordinated campaign of harassment against me which has been ongoing for several years,” he wrote.
Dr Braun said parliamentary privilege had been used to avoid complaint channels designed to afford procedural fairness to medical practitioners.
“I believe parliamentary privilege was used in this instance to circumvent these established avenues of complaint, and avoid appropriate scrutiny of both the claims that were being made and the motives of those behind them,” he wrote.
Dr Braun claimed one of the individuals referred to in the tabled documents said she was approached to make a complaint against him, but had no legitimate reason to do so.
“Furthermore, this individual felt that this matter concerned some private disagreement between surgeons and had nothing to do with her,” he added.
In February, Ms Bates told parliament that clinicians, nurses and drug company representatives were ignored when they made complaints to government agencies and regulatory bodies.
She said they feared being sacked if they spoke up.
Allegations include that Dr Braun inappropriately touched female colleagues and invited them to engage in sex acts with him, told women they wouldn’t make good surgeons, and physically intimidated staff.
The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons has said complaints were previously made but could not be pursued because of a lack of evidence.
Dr Braun has practised in a number of public and private facilities.
Australian Associated Press