Editor’s note: This story is part of a series of special reports by the I-Team and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution about doctors accused of sexual misconduct. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s yearlong, 50-state analysis found medical boards in some states do little to inform or protect patients when doctors were found to have abused their power. Read the full national report here, and read the I-Team’s analysis of local doctors sanctioned by the Ohio Medical Board here.
Dayton-area doctor Timothy Heyd’s license was suspended for two years in 2008 after the Ohio Medical Board learned he had improper sexual relations with three patients.
Heyd’s license was reinstated in 2010 and his probation ended last year.
The first incident led to a two month suspension in 2005. The patient was a nurse he worked with at Miami Valley Hospital. Both were married, and he broke it off in 1998, but a month later found out she was pregnant, according to state medical board records.
“I told her that my life would be ruined,” he told the medical board.
Following the pair’s termination of the pregnancy, Heyd sent her a letter terminating their patient-doctor relationship, and tried to cut off contact with her, according to the board records.
He was terminated from Miami Valley – he believes because she threatened to sue, he told the board. She later filed a lawsuit that was settled for $150,000, with Heyd, the hospital and his malpractice insurer each paying a third, board records show.
Heyd said a medical board investigator contacted him about the incident in May 1999, but then he didn’t hear anything else from the board until four years later. And the board didn’t take any official action until July 2004.
Medical Board members sympathized with Heyd, according to board minutes from a May 2005 hearing.
“(Boardmember Anita Steinbergh) stated that she feels very badly for any physician who makes this mistake,” the minutes say, “but she does believe that Dr. Heyd has paid tremendously for his mistake and it’s time to get on with it.”
The minutes then say, “He’s painfully aware of his mistakes, and he promised it would never happen again.”
This wasn’t his only fling with a patient. In 2008, a second case was brought against Heyd by the medical board noting he had an improper sexual relationship with another patient in 2000, and a third patient in 2005.
This time the board suspended Heyd’s license for two years. It was reinstated in 2010 under probation. He was released from probation in November 2015.
Heyd was hired in April 2011 by the state of Ohio at the Warren Correctional Facility, where he received an award last year for saving the life of an inmate who attempted suicide. He was paid $184,203 in 2015, according to the I-Team Payroll Project.
His personnel file, obtained from ODRC, shows that while his medical license was suspended he worked briefly for a pharmaceutical company and then at a department store.
His personnel file makes no reference to the license suspension, though state prison officials say they were aware of it before he was hired.
“This information was brought to our attention during the background check process,” said JoEllen Smith, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections.
Heyd could not be reached for comment. A message was left with Heyd’s attorney who represented him in front of the medical board.