Posts Tagged ‘Arizona Licensed Psychologist #3316’

RFI Arnold & Middaugh

Sunday, December 28th, 2008

 

rfi20041229arnold

 

P.O. Box 2325

Florence, Arizona 85232-2325

December 29, 2004

 

Board of Psychologist Examiners

State of Arizona

1400 West Washington, Suite 235

Phoenix, Arizona 85007

 

 

Re: Susanne Arnold, Ph.D.

Arizona Licensed Psychologist #3316

Florence, Arizona 85232

Work (520) 868-4011 ext 5208

Pager (602) 271-5068

 

Lack of Professionalism & Ethical Violations

 

 

Dear Board of Psychologist Examiners:

 

My complaint is two fold.  As a licensed psychologist in the State of Arizona, it appalls me that another licensed psychologist behaves thus.

 

The first part of my complaint is rather simple and succinct, yet it shows a lack of professionalism and demonstrates concerns about Dr. Arnold’s ability to practice psychology ethically.  This concern is somewhat limited; nonetheless, I anticipate the Board at least issuing a Letter of Concern to Dr. Arnold correcting and educating this licensed psychologist.  This may include some remedial training in ethics or whatever the Board deems beneficial and necessary for the safe practice of professional psychology in the State of Arizona.

 

Part I

 

On November 9, 2004 at approximately 9:45 AM, I called my former supervisor Dr. Arnold to see how she wanted me to deliver psychological testing materials to her for safe keeping and how she wanted me to transfer the two interstate compacts upon which I was working.  Shortly after the conversation began, Dr. Arnold went into a tirade and the conversation deteriorated.  It became very one-sided.  I tried several times to dissuade Dr. Arnold from further comment on matters not directly related to the business at hand, but she was relentless. I tried to get her to desist from further conversation but she would not stop.  Dr. Arnold insisted that I listen to her and her bitter and derisive statements.  She prefaced these with the qualifier: “I’m going to tell the truth.”

 

Sensing that the conversation was headed in the wrong direction, I tried to end it. Dr. Arnold pressed on: “You probably don’t want to hear what I have to say, but you have a lot of deep problems.  I mean you are very disturbed.”  Dr. Arnold continued to assert that I was very deeply disturbed without any regard for my well-being or for professional boundaries.  The statements had nothing to do with clinical practice, nor were they work related.  Moreover, there a distinct lack of an appropriate expression of concern for my welfare.

 

These were not a job related statements.  Nor was it said in a manner to support my growth and professional development.  Moreover, there was no open chart nor she did have permission to treat me.  She violated professional boundaries and attempted to use her psychological expertise as weaponry to harm me.

  

It is unethical for any psychologist to practice without an informed consent to treatment.  It is unethical for a psychologist to treat without having a chart opened.  It is unconscionable for a psychologist to attempt to use her tools to undermine the health and well-being of another person, especially if that person is another psychologist.  Furthermore, it is unethical to attempt to practice on one’s subordinates and it is a violation of professional boundaries and ethics to attempt to do so.  In my opinion, it is more heinous than forming a dual relationship.

 

I request that the Board investigate this matter.  It is my hope that Dr. Arnold will admit her errors.  And I anticipate the Board instructing Dr. Arnold on proper professional behavior and boundaries becoming a licensed psychologist in the State of Arizona.

 

It is impossible for me to approach Dr. Arnold informally to resolve this matter, and I suspect she will resist the Board bringing this query to her attention.  It is imperative that psychologists be trained properly in professionalism and ethics in order to assure the safety of the public.  For myself, I seek only an apology, and for our profession, I ask the Board to educate and redirect Dr. Arnold.

 

Part II

 

Some of my last communications with Dr. Arnold concerned the behavior of a former employee, another licensed psychologist, who was reported in our weekly staff meeting last summer to be marrying a former inmate-patient less than a year after the termination of therapy.

 

Dr. Ann Middaugh, Psychologist [Arizona License #3258] left DOC in September 2003.  Only a few months had passed when I heard about this last summer.  This was well under the two years recognized by the APA Code of Ethics as required before a relationship with a former patient could even be considered.  I was told by Mr. Johnson that Dr. Middaugh saw this client every week in therapy for two years up until the time she left DOC in September 2003.

 

According to a master’s level clinician, Darrel Johnson, Psychological Associate II at ASPC-Florence North Unit [work (520) 868-4011 ext 5741, pager (602) 271-1423], Dr. Middaugh testified upon her future husband’s behalf against DOC in approximately May 2004:

 

‘She ratted DOC out [sic] and told the Court everything bad that DOC had done to the inmate.   . . . The inmate is described by men and women alike as gorgeous, as an Adonis.  . . . It’s on record that he had murderous impulses since the age of eight.  . . . He filed [for permission to marry] at Baker Ward [DOC’s inpatient mental health unit] after being there inpatient for almost a year.’

 

I reminded Dr. Arnold of her responsibility as Supervising Psychologist III that she must report her former subordinate to the Board.  At one time, since Dr. Arnold was not responsive, in a motivational manner, I appealed to Dr. Arnold to call this other psychologist and see if how ‘salvageable’ she might be.  Nonetheless, I know that matters regarding sex with a patient are extremely serious and that these cannot be resolved informally.  These require Board notification.

 

No one should remain a licensed psychologist who shows such poor boundaries that they marry a client.  There is also the possibility of sex with a patient, felony sexual battery typically punishable by a two year sentence.  And perhaps even the possibility of sexual relations with an inmate, which brings an even higher seven year sentence.

 

Dr. Arnold refused to bring this to the attention of the Board yet suggested I could make the report.  However, I was not Dr. Ann Middaugh’s supervisor while she was employed at DOC and practiced at ASPC-Florence East Unit.  I have no access to the charts nor do I know the inmate’s name that is reported to have named Dr. Middaugh on his Request for Marriage Form filed approximately June 2004.  In short, I have no direct evidence of Dr. Middaugh’s reported indiscretion.  I am however reporting our supervising psychologist’s failure to report this matter to the Board appropriately.

 

It appears this failure to report to the Board may be based on gender discrimination.  Dr. Arnold would likely file charges against a male psychologist but refused to file a complaint against her female subordinate.

 

In these matters, I place my confidence in the Arizona Board of Psychologist Examiners to take appropriate action.

 

Sincerely,

  

 

 

John Kent, Ph.D.

Psychologist

Arizona #3339