Doctor attends trial while performing surgery| Doctor attends Zoom trial while performing surgery


Doctor attends Zoom trial while performing surgery | Image: Sacramento Superior Court&nbsp

A judge in California, US, was shocked when a doctor showed up for his virtual traffic trial while performing surgery in an operating room. Dr Scott Green appeared in the Zoom trial while wearing his surgical scrubs and a mask as a patient was undergoing the procedure off camera.

The unusual scene happened in the courtroom of Sacramento Superior Court Commissioner Gary Link, who was unimpressed with the doctor agreeing to go ahead with the trial while performing the surgery.

A court clerk asked Green if he was in an operating room when he dialled in for his traffic trial, according to the Sacramento Bee newspaper.

“I am, sir. Yes, I’m in an operating room right now. I’m available for trial. Go right ahead,” the doctor said as he continued to work.

Link asked, “So unless I’m mistaken, I’m seeing a defendant that’s in the middle of an operating room appearing to be actively engaged in providing services to a patient. Is that correct, Mr Green? Or should I say Dr Green?”.

He added, “I do not feel comfortable for the welfare of a patient if you’re in the process of operating that I would put on a trial notwithstanding the fact the officer is here today.”

However, Green assured the court that he was available for the trial, saying, “I have another surgeon right here who’s doing the surgery with me, so I can stand here and allow them to do the surgery also.”

Link, who was unamused, replied, “I don’t think so. I don’t think that’s appropriate. I’m going to come up with a different date – when you’re not actively involved or participating and attending to the needs of a patient. Let me see if I can get a different date here.”

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Green then said, “I apologise, Your Honor, to the court. Sometimes, surgery doesn’t always go as…”

The commissioner interrupted, “It happens. We want to keep people healthy, we want to keep them alive. That’s important. I’m concerned about the welfare of the patient based on what I’m seeing.”

In the Sacramento Superior Court system, a court commissioner is appointed by a judge to carry out judicial functions and act as a temporary judge.

The case was rescheduled for March.

The Medical Board of California said that it is looking into the incident. A spokesperson, in a statement, said “The Medical Board of California expects physicians to follow the standard of care when treating their patients. The Board is aware of this incident and will be looking into it, as it does with all complaints it receives.”

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