Thursday, February 14, 2008

Leave Your Weapons At The Door

I've always thought that psychiatrists, and anyone in the same type of field, place considerable personal danger upon themselves with their mode of operation. It doesn't matter if the mental and/or emotional issue is "small" or seemingly harmless. Anyone can snap at a moment's notice. Being totally alone in a room with someone with such issues while trying to evoke or dig these up is highly hazardous, I think.

During a convo one afternoon a long time ago, we asked a psychiatrist friend if she had ever thought of installing metal detectors and doing bag and body searches on her patients before they even step into her clinic.

She admitted that she had but it was against the amendments and medical code to do so. It's probably rather off-putting to be so distrusted by someone you are seeking help from for trust issues, I guess.

Still, if someone snaps, they really do not need to bring a cleaver or gun into the clinic. In a rage, a pen or letter opener are extremely useful weapons. And having another person in the room like a nurse would probably break some sort of doctor-patient confidentiality clause. Maybe a doctor-nurse-patient confidentiality clause should be considered. And ex-wrestlers and cops can now get retirement jobs as nurses cum bouncer.

From the gothamist,

FEBRUARY 13, 2008
Upper East Side Psychologist Murdered; Patient Suspected

A psychologist was slashed to death in her office building at 79th Street and York last night. Another therapist was seriously injured; the suspect is still at large.

Police believe that Dr. Kathryn Faughey was killed by a patient during a 9PM session. Dr. Kent Shinback, a colleague in the same practice, ran into Faughey's office when he heard her screaming and tried to stop the patient, but he was, per the Daily News, "slashed numerous times in the face and neck." The suspect, described as a white middle-aged male with blond/light hair, fled, possibly through the basement.

Two weapons were found, a meat cleaver and a 9-inch knife, both bent from the force of the attacks. A doorman told the Post he saw the suspect go into the building but not out, "He looked like a psycho." And a police source told the News the attack was very vicious: "Lots of anger. This was clearly personal."

Faughey, who lived across the street, had a website where she described her style as "cognitive behavioral - tailored to fit the individual. My specialty is pinpointing the issues; developing techniques to resolve them." She even recognized issues about "online intimacy," like "monitoring the ex" through "IM, myspace, facebook, blogs, etc."

Shinbach is in serious but stable condition at New York-Presbyterian Hospital Weill Cornell. Their office manager Darlene Yeats said, "[Faughey]'s a wonderful, loving person who didn't deserve this. She was so close with all of us. I'm shocked and devastated. I'm at a loss for words."