Kansas psychiatrist Douglas Geenens disciplined for second time on patient sex-related violation

Douglas Lee Geenens, D.O., is a Kansas City area physician who specializes in psychiatry and child psychiatry. He has operated mainly in the Overland Park area of Kansas but also was also licensed in Missouri until October 2007.

On February 4, 2010, the Kansas Board of Healing Arts censured Geenens for sexual misconduct.

The Board found, as a matter of fact, that Geenens slept in the same bed as one of his patients during the time he was treating the patient. Geenens admitted the same at hearing and conceded that such behavior was a boundary violation.

The Board’s document states that the board “takes administrative notice of the fact…[that Geenens’ actions] have caused a public outcry in both the press and in the Kansas Legislature. The public perceives it should be protected from the actions of licensees who commit violations of the Healing Arts Act, such as by [Geenens]. The desire of the public to be protected from licensees who violate the…Act…is an aggravating factor which weighs against [Geenens].”

In addition to censure, the Board fined Geenens $5,000 and ordered him to pay $27,477.56, for the Board’s costs of investigation and hearing.

This is only the latest action in Geenens’ well-documented disciplinary history:

The Kansas Board of Healing Arts suspended his medical license for six months on December 11, 2004 with all but seven days stayed. The reason for this disciplinary action was that Dr. Geenens engaged in a social and then sexual relationship with a former patient–the wife of a colleague who had come to him for treatment of “depression and marital issues,” according to the Kansas Board’s Order, which you can see here.

Dr. Geenens married this former patient in Key West, Florida on December 15, 2007.

Dr. Geenens was under investigation by the Missouri State Board of Registration for the Healing Arts but quietly “retired” his license in October 2007 when it was due for renewal. This, according to an official letter from the Board, “closed the Board’s case” against him.

Dr. Geenens was the treating psychiatrist of 13-year-old Matthew Miller, who hanged himself after one week on the Geenens-prescribed antidepressant Zoloft in July 1997. Zoloft is manufactured by the the Pfizer pharmaceutical company. According to a deposition Geenens gave in a lawsuit filed by Miller’s parents against Pfizer, Geenens was (and possibly still is) a highly paid Pfizer speaker, frequently given promotional talks on Zoloft. Story here (particularly paragraph 28).

Some time between December 2004 and present, the Kansas Board of Healing Arts re-opened an investigation of Dr. Geenens, due in part perhaps to complaints filed by Citizens Commission on Human Rights, citing his ongoing relationship with the former patient as a continuing violation of rules and regulations governing the conduct of physicians.

On October 29, 2008, the Kansas Board of Healing Arts filed a 23-count disciplinary Petition against Dr. Geenens, seeking to suspend or revoke his license for numerous alleged violations, 20 of which state that he prescribed psychiatric drugs to patients and non-patients without sufficient examinations. It also cites “boundary issues” in connection with improper relationships with patients. In one case, the Petition states that Geenens told a patient, “You need to get a divorce, move to the Plaza and we could have breakfast together.” The document has not yet been published by the Board, but you can see local news about it here.

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5 responses to “Kansas psychiatrist Douglas Geenens disciplined for second time on patient sex-related violation

  1. When Dr Geenens “retired his license in october of 2007 I was not notified of the closure of his office. I was receiving samples of a very expensive anti-psychotic medication by pfizer called Geodon. I called and got no answer but I went to the office because I knew a sudden stop of such medications can make psychotic symptoms worse and cause serious issues in life, work, family, and love. All of these things were near lost to me. All ethics of patient/Dr relationship aside, the level of selfishness it takes to knowingly shutdown and give no warning to the patients who need the medication you are providing is inhumane.

  2. Wow. Sorry to learn of this (sort of). I hope Geenens and his family are doing well and properly thriving in Florida. I can almost bet they are, with that stifling KC mentality behind them. We moved away from KC in the early 2000’s but my husband (also a physician) and I always like Dr. Geenen– a lot. He was just great with our young son who suffered tremendously at the hands of ignorant teachers and principals in the local Shawnee Mission School District (bullied almost to death due to his very mild Aspergers). The district had no clue or any knowledge about how to handle mild Aspergers (Geenan first diagnosed our son at age 6 in 1997) and they mentally abused and tortured the poor kid rather than obtaining information/education on the then-new diagnosis. Geenen was so kind and compassionate– and so progressive in comparison to most docs in the KC area. He was leap years ahead of the psychiatrists there! But I always sensed, for some odd reason, that with Geenen being such an extraordinary physician– he was constantly being “targeted” in the KC area simply because he thought outside the box (that’s a real “no-no” in a provincial community such as Kansas City). It was nothing short of jealousy. Just envy (among his ‘colleagues’). He had no real peers, as it’s so incredibly stifling there in KC and that section of the US. I honestly don’t know how he lasted there as long as he did! I never could figure out why he’d even practice there in a town like that in the first place. He was meant for bigger/better/more progressive cities. At age 57 now I hope he can just laugh at it all. What else can ya do? Best wishes.

    • I hardly think that “KC mentality” is to blame for Dr. Geenens’ problems. Seducing a married patient away from her husband and then marrying her isn’t “thinking outside the box”; it’s a violation of the APA’s ethics code. And do I dare say that it’s generally considered morally and ethically wrong.

  3. Oops, just read a bit further online and see that Geenens still practices in KC. But, yeah– I still feel (very strongly) that there’s always been a HUGE vendetta against Geenens in KC and that his so-called “problems” do indeed stem from tremendous envy and the small town “mentality” that permeates there (small/provincial mindsets). Geenen is, and always has been, a very highly respected man in his field– and that’s really, really hard for many of his colleagues to accept/handle there. I’m sorry if that comment offends some, but it’s simply the truth.

    As a victim of sexual predation by a psychiatrist in the KC area (Dr. Sheridan Tucker), myself, I will hold back on saying that I KNOW for certain that Geenens is not a sexual predator or that he didn’t overstep his professional boundaries– because I don’t know that for sure. None of us KNOW, either way! But, I can say with certainty that there was (and likely still is) tremendous jealousy toward Dr. Geenens. From the beginning of his practice that Murphy guy was bound and determined to destroy him! It was very well known around town. Looks like Jacobson has a similar ax to grind. Men are competitive among themselves, especially when it comes to females and careers– and they WILL GET EVEN. The air was so thick with envy/hate there toward Geenens– you could almost slice it with a knife. Other docs in his age group (young-ish, in the mid 90’s) were quick to climb the ladder and kiss ass (Barash?) while Geenens took the time and energy to show our son that he, in fact, was not flawed… but was a very important part of society and a true pioneer in the whole Aspergers awareness movement. We thank Dr. Geenens from the bottom of our hearts. His compassion saved our son.

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