The Head of the Department of Psychological Medicine and Mental Health at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dr Eugene Dordoye, has denied claims that he staged a consulting room, faked a diagnosis and forced an injection on a medical doctor who turned down his request to withdraw a divorce lawsuit.
His denial is contained in a two-page rejoinder he issued after he declined to answer some questions posed to him by Media Without Borders concerning the allegations levelled against him by Dr Jemima Amo-Tachie, the divorce plaintiff.
Dr Dordoye had come up with a contested diagnosis that Dr Amo-Tachie had psychosis. His diagnosis came after he reporteldy failed to convince Dr Amo-Tachie to withdraw the case she filed against her husband, Dr Yaw Opoku-Boateng.
And he told Media Without Borders he would only answer the questions on condition that Dr Amo-Tachie was part of the interview.
Dr Amo-Tachie excused herself from the interview on the grounds that the same Dr Dordoye had filed a petition earlier in the year against her before the Medical and Dental Council for rejecting his “baseless” diagnosis and his “questionable” medication.
She said engaging in that telephone conversation with him would imply disrespect against the council.
The council’s Registrar, Dr Divine Ndonbi Banyubala, confirmed to Media Without Borders that Dr Dordoye filed a petition against Dr Amo-Tachie on February 28, 2023.
Dr Amo-Tachie insisted that Dr Dordoye made the attempt on her in his consulting room.
Notwithstanding Dr Dordoye’s refusal to answer all the questions posed to him, Media Without Borders published Dr Amo-Tachie’s claims on Wednesday, 19 July 2023. The publication also contains the only answers obtained from Dr Dordoye during the questioning.
Dr Dordoye had asked Dr Amo-Tachie to meet with him in his consulting room on Thursday, 4 February 2021, at Corporate Wellness Consultancy, a private facility in Ghana’s capital city of Accra. He also asked her to come along with a relative for the appointment.
She did as he requested, accompanied by a family friend, Clement Twih-Barimah.
Twih-Barimah (not Twum-Barimah, as Dr Dordoye would wrongly spell in his rejoinder) later testified that Dr Dordoye insisted several times that Dr Amo-Tachie take either tablets or an injection.
He further stated that the psychiatrist could have injected her forcibly if he (Twih-Barimah) had not been present because he became “furious” as Dr Amo-Tachie questioned his move and declined to take the medication.
Some medical and security experts have shared their opinions on the alleged encounter between Dr Amo-Tachie and Dr Dordoye.
They say there are medicines that can render people psychotic when administered or consumed. And they think Dr Dordoye’s request that Dr Amo-Tachie should visit him in the company of her relative could be a ploy to suppress any suspicions if he had any harmful intentions.
The July 19 publication also made reference to claims that Dr Dordoye went to Dr Amo-Tachie’s parents uninvited on Friday, 12 February 2021, reiterating his divorce-withdrawal demand and and telling them that he had diagnosed their daughter with psychosis.
But Dr Dordoye’s rejoinder is silent on the drama that unfolded at the residence of Dr Amo-Tachie’s parents and it did not touch on other issues highlighted in the publication.
And contrary to “the facts” listed in Dr Dordoye’s rejoinder, Dr Amo-Tachie has also maintained strongly that she was never psychotic and that she never contacted him (Dr Dordoye) for any service whatsoever about mental health on herself before he came up with his “defamatory” diagnosis and report.
World-renowned psychiatrist and one-time Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Mental Health Authority, Prof. Joseph Bediako Asare, came up with a report that rubbished the diagnosis made earlier by Dr Dordoye, a subordinate to Prof. Asare.
The celebrated former Ghana’s Chief Psychiatrist says in the report that Dr Amo-Tachie is not psychotic. The divorce case is still in progress at a court in Accra.
Below is the rejoinder from Dr Dordoye:
My attention has been drawn to an article published on 19th July 2023 by a certain Edward Adeti in the name of an entity described as Media Without Borders titled, “Doctor hauled before Ghana’s Medical and Dental Council after refusing to withdraw divorce court case against the husband,” .
In the said publication, the most unfounded allegations have been made against me concerning a client I attended to over two years ago.
- My said client contacted me first on the phone for a consultation in November 2020. According to her, she was advised to do so.
- I consequently scheduled the consultation with her on the Saturday, 7th November 2020, following the day of the call, as that was when I would be in Accra.
- She did make the appointment, and we had our first in-person meeting.
- It was during our first in-person meeting that we made a diagnosis.
- After that, we invited her to come with a responsible other as part of her management (including diagnosis and definitive therapy).
- She subsequently attended with Mr. Clement Twum-Barimah.
- There was no occasion that the withdrawal of a divorce suit against her ex-husband was made a condition to her diagnosis, treatment, or practice as a medical doctor.
MATTERS OF NOTE IN PSYCHIATRY
As part of assessing clients, psychiatrists take collateral information to corroborate or otherwise the information the client gives. We usually prefer to take this information from all persons who have been with the client, and especially, can describe a behaviour change. We may take such information from relatives, friends, teachers, or the police. Also, given that mental conditions are not physical to point to, a psychiatrist must get a responsible other to appreciate the nature of the condition (as the persons themselves may not be able to) to help manage the condition. Sometimes, we have had to resort to security agencies when the person threatens self or others.
When the management includes taking medication, the doctor, also in general medical conditions like hypertension or diabetes, can impress on the client to take treatment to prevent complications (the more severe consequences of untreated medical conditions). Doctors do not get angry when patients refuse their treatment, and I did not, or will ever, be angry with a client refusing to take medication. It is commonplace in mental healthcare.
The suggestion that I, or any person under my instruction, was minded to administer drugs to the client to cause psychosis is preposterous and impossible even under the wildest stretch of one’s imagination. The article itself confirms that I recommended that the client attend subsequent consultations in the company of some other person of her choice.
In the author’s own words, he stated as follows;
“Later on that Wednesday, Dr. Dordoye, who is currently the head of the Department of Psychological Medicine and Mental Health at the University of Health and Allied Sciences, asked her to meet with him the following day at Corporate Wellness Consultancy, a private facility in Accra.”
And he also asked that she come to the clinic with a relative. The reason for the invitation was not immediately mentioned to her.”
If I intended to harm my client at the appointed time, why would I have asked her to come accompanied?
We at Consultancy Well Center, CWC, respect the privacy and confidentiality of our clients. We have been at the forefront of mental health advocacy, support, and awareness creation in Ghana. We have offered pro bono mental healthcare services to Ghanaians and non-Ghanaians, and are committed to high ethical standards.
Dr. Eugene K Dordoye
Source: Edward Adeti/Media Without Borders/mwbonline.org