Gynecologist May Have Been Taking Unauthorized Pictures of Patients

A Baltimore-area gynecologist, who recently had his medical license suspended, faces suspicion of taking unauthorized photographs of patients, after pictures of female genitalia were found on his phone during a search by federal drug agents.  

Dr. John Yacoub’s license was suspended by the Maryland State Board of Physicians on October 8, according to an order (PDF) posted by the board. The decision came after an investigation that began in December 2012, when he was fired by a local hospital amid concerns over the inappropriate dispensing of prescription drugs.

On September 23, agents with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) executed a search warrant at Dr. Yacoub’s home, which uncovered evidence of inappropriate prescriptions and indication that he was using illicit drugs, including cocaine.

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Shockingly, a search of his telephone also uncovered many pictures containing close ups of female genitalia. Most of the images contained a hand with a medical glove, and at least two contain medical equipment, suggesting that the photographs may have been taken during the course of medical treatment.

Dr. Yacoub was working for a private practice located at Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC) in Towson, Maryland until earlier this month. However, before November 2012, he worked at St. Agnes Hospital’s Seton Medical Center.

Maryland malpractice lawyers are now reviewing potential cases for former patients of Dr. Yacoub, as the investigation continues into the nature of the photographs and extent of any privacy violations.

The allegations are similar to another recent incident involving a Maryland gynecologist, who committed suicide amid charges that he was taking unauthorized photos of patients during medical treatments. Dr. Nikita Levy was allegedly taking unauthorized photographs of patients during OB/GYN examinations using cameras hidden in the walls of his office and in a pen.

Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore faces a number of lawsuits by former patients of Dr. Levy, who was found dead in his home in February 2013. A search of his home by law enforcement officials discovered thousands of photographs and videos secretly taken of patients, including recordings of private areas of their anatomy that were taken without patient knowledge or permission.

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