Winnipeg doctor surrenders licence, avoids sexual misconduct hearing

·3 min read
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba noted no findings of professional misconduct were made against Nihad Nagy William.  (CBC - image credit)
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba noted no findings of professional misconduct were made against Nihad Nagy William. (CBC - image credit)

A Winnipeg-based family doctor has surrendered his licence and promised to never practise in Canada or elsewhere again after allegations of sexual misconduct were levied against him by two female patients.

Nihad Nagy William's registration and practice certificate with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Manitoba were permanently and irrevocably surrendered as of July 4, the college said in a decision posted on its website a day later.

William had been working under a voluntary requirement from the physicians' regulator that a chaperone be present for any of his interactions with female patients.

It was put in place after two women lodged complaints about his conduct months apart starting in late 2018 and the college opened an investigation.

William, who records show was practicing out of Rasha Medical Clinic on Pembina Highway, elected to surrender his credentials prior to the college holding a contested hearing into the complaints in June.

He denies any wrongdoing. The college noted in its decision the allegations made against him were unproven and no findings of professional misconduct had been made out.

Inappropriate touching alleged

The first complaint against him came from a woman who visited him for a prescription refill on Dec. 8, 2018, according to the decision on the college's website. The patient, identified as 'Patient A,' alleged he'd pressed his body against hers and his face against the area between her vagina and buttocks.

She disclosed what happened when seeing another doctor, who was duty-bound to report what she'd alleged.

The second complaint came after another woman saw him on June 4, 2019, the college said. Patient B went to see Williams for an assessment of eczema on her elbows.

She alleged William touched her inappropriately while her pants were lowered, "including putting his arms around her while pressed against her and touching her bare buttocks with his hands," the college said.

The woman told a family member about the interaction and they supported her making a complaint, first to his clinic and then to the college.

"The investigation committee was mindful that the allegations made by Patient A and Patient B would, if proven, clearly represent serious breaches of Dr. William's responsibility to maintain boundaries and would constitute serious sexual boundary violations," the college said.

The women said they suffered significant emotional harm, the college said. While they were prepared to testify against William, they didn't want to as they expected it to be a "traumatizing experience," said the college.

Both told the college they were satisfied with the end result.

"Their primary concern was that this could happen to another patient in future. Permanent and irrevocable voluntary surrender [of William's credentials] precludes that eventuality."

The college noted the outcome would offer "potentially better protection" to the public than what it might have been able to following a hearing.

"While an inquiry panel can cancel a member's registration, it cannot preclude that member from applying for reinstatement or from applying for registration in another jurisdiction," the decision said. Outcomes of contested hearings always have a degree of uncertainty, it notes.

No complaints filed, police say

William, a 1996 graduate of Ain Shams University in Cairo, Egypt, was first registered to practice in Manitoba in December 2006, college records show.

Online searches indicate he's also worked in Thompson and in southern Manitoba over the years. He also holds a certification with the College of Family Physicians of Canada.

In addition to surrendering his credentials, William has also undertaken to never again apply for a licence, certificate or equivalent to practise any regulated health profession anywhere in the country or elsewhere.

A Winnipeg police spokesperson said Saturday it doesn't appear any complaints have been filed with them.

William was also ordered to pay the college $25,000 in costs. CBC was unable to reach William for comment.