A ROSYTH doctor who groped a midwife’s leg at a Christmas party has been suspended from practising for six months. 

Married dad-of-two Dr Michael Ross, who works part-time as a GP at Primrose Lane Medical Centre, was with a group of colleagues at the Hanover Tap pub in Edinburgh when he put his hand up and down the inner thigh of the shocked woman he was sat next to. 

The woman fled the party in December 2016 after calling her husband to collect her. 

Despite apologising for his behaviour, the doctor groped her leg three months later saying: “We have to look after your legs” as they were moving her desk in their shared office.

The midwife, named only as Miss A, claimed that she was “felt up by a disgusting guy” adding he twice stroked her back on other occasions. 

She claimed the doctor made her “skin crawl”. 

Ross, 44, who worked as a senior clinical lecturer at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for Medical Education (CME) with the midwife until he was dismissed in 2017, denied any wrongdoing. 

At the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service last week he faced being struck off after being found guilty of “sexually motivated” misconduct. 

However, he will keep his job after careful regard to testimonials portraying the doctor as a man of good character. 

Several young woman subordinate to him all spoke of being comfortable in his presence and confirmed that nothing untoward ever happened, even when alone with him.

The tribunal panel believed that the incident had been isolated as there has been “no repetitions of his misconduct”. 

Dr Ross stated while giving evidence that he accidentally rested his hand on the thigh or knee of the midwife because of a cramped seating situation but the tribunal believed his credibility was diminished by the “sheer implausibility” of some of his evidence. 

The panel also concluded that his apology to Miss A at the Christmas party was unconvincing and said they “did not find Dr Ross to be a credible witness”.

Recalling the incident at the Hanover Tap pub, Miss A stated: “I remembered I looked at my boss opposite me and just thought I need to get out of this situation. 

“I felt so humiliated and I just thought I can’t tell the woman opposite who’s both mine and his boss that he’s just put his hands up my skirt. 

“I was in shock. I felt humiliated and ashamed. I stood up and walked away.”

Other attendees at the party stated that they had seen no change in the midwife’s behaviour after the incident in the bar but Miss A said that she was in a “state of shock”. 

The misconduct was not reported until several months later as Miss A was new to the CME in December 2016, with the tribunal noting that she may have been reluctant to tarnish the reputation of a long-established senior member of staff, who had been there since 2003. 

She reported the incident in March 2017 as by then she had a series of concerns to raise. 

Following the Christmas party, the midwife said she chose to go to work on days when she knew Dr Ross would not be there, decreased the number of working days within the CME and moved her desk to another area away from Dr Ross’ desk.

Eventually, she was signed off sick by the university. 

The tribunal heard that Ross had not apologised to Miss A or the University of Edinburgh for his conduct. 

He also accused the woman of being drunk at the Christmas party and claimed that when he apologised to her, she replied: “This is what happens at Christmas parties.” Miss A denied she ever said that. 

He will face a review hearing next year but it was determined there were no issues of patient safety arising in this case. 
Dr Ross has been suspended from working as a doctor for six months.
His registration will be revoked within 28 days unless he appeals.