Former PACHA Chair, Founder of American Academy of HIV Medicine Surrenders Medical License Amid Molestation Allegations
Dr. Scott Hitt, former chair of the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS and founder of the American Academy of HIV Medicine, last week surrendered his medical license amid allegations that he sexually molested two patients at his office in Beverly Hills, Calif., the Los Angeles Times reports (Daniels, Los Angeles Times, 7/24). The Medical Board of California filed a formal accusation in 2002, and Hitt admitted to touching the genitals of one patient and "crossing a boundary" with another patient, saying that his health problems, including a colon cancer diagnosis, impaired his judgment. The medical board charged Hitt with grossly negligent behavior, incompetent medical care of the two patients and committing dishonest and corrupt acts (Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report, 2/24). Hitt was suspended for 60 days in February and placed on seven years' probation, which requires him to enroll in an ethics course; have a chaperone present when consulting with, examining or treating patients; and complete a professional boundaries program. According to his attorney, Patric Hooper, Hitt surrendered his license because he was concerned that his colon cancer would prevent him from fulfilling the terms of his probation. Hitt had practiced internal medicine at Pacific Oaks Medical Group until he enrolled in a rehabilitation and recovery program in 2000. Since then he has served as chief executive of AAHM. A spokesperson for the academy would not comment on whether Hitt will keep his position. When he was named chair of the PACHA in 1995 under former President Clinton, Hitt became the first openly gay person to head a presidential advisory committee (Los Angeles Times, 7/24).This is part of the Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.