Florida Teen Arrested After Successfully Posing As Physician’s Aide At Hospital ER

Matthew Scheidt, 17, has been charged in a bizarre case where he successfully posed as a physician’s assistant for two weeks at a hospital. He was able to work in the ER, remove IV, and perform examinations at the Osceola Regional Medical Center in Kissimmee, Florida.

Under tort law, a person who holds himself out as a professional is held to that standard in any negligence case. Thus, the question for the jury would be whether a reasonable PA would have taken the actions alleged in the case. However, in this case, there is no evidence that Scheidt failed to meet the higher standard and no account of injuries.

If that remains the case the question becomes whether the patients could sue for the privacy violation and possible battery since they only consented to being touched by staff. Yet they did consent to these touchings — just by a different status of person.

There is also negligence. Center’s human resources department gave Scheidt a “new” identification badge when he asked for it. When the badge did not give him sufficient access, he was bold enough to return to HR repeatedly for another badge. Finally, someone became suspicious and called police. The problem with negligence remains the damages if the procedures were handled reasonably according to the standard of a professional PA.

His immediate concern is a third degree felony. In the meantime, he is being held in the Juvenile Detention Center and presumably is not being given any new ids.

Source: WFTV

14 thoughts on “Florida Teen Arrested After Successfully Posing As Physician’s Aide At Hospital ER”

  1. Frankly
    1, September 8, 2011 at 10:00 am
    Heard on the NPR this AM the South FL leads the nation in Medicare fraud. It fits the pattern.
    Didn’t the state of Florida elect as its Governor the man who was in charge of the company that received the largest Medicare fraud fine in history? Yeah, that would boost your rankings as “leading the nation in Medicare fraud”!

    But this particular case reminds me of the 14 year old who walked into a Chicago police station in uniform and was assigned to a patrol car (with a partner) for 5 hours…

  2. Carol: You were right to be concerned about taking out stitches without instruction. My husband had a routine hand surgery last month. The surgery went perfectly, and he was doing well, until the PA removed the stitches. He started getting sore two days later. Conclusion? Two more surgeries, four days in the hospital, and four weeks of IV antibiotics and twice daily dressing changes.

  3. Yep, Woosty…House of God. I read it when I finished nursing school. One of my nursing profs gave it to me as a graduation gift.. I chased it with Mount Misery…

  4. When I was a “college student premed volunteer” – this is how my ID read, I was about 19 and looked it. They gave us white coats and patients ignored the info on the badge, as well as my verbal protestations when they would call me “Doctor.” I had one patient’s husband follow me out of the hospital literally begging me to give him information on his critically ill wife. In the clinic a resident introduced me to a patient, “This is Ms. Levy.” He added, without telling me first so I could refuse, “She will be removing the stitches from your head wound.” He then walked out of the room. I did not know what to do and did not want to upset the patient (maybe if I had been a llittle older it would have occurred to me to excuse myself and go after the doc.) so I took out his stitches. Hospitals have to be more on the ball with this. I would think they are culpable as if, G-d forbid, ‘my’ patient had developed an infection because I had missed a suture (I did, but thankfully the resident bothered to check my work.)

  5. Heard on the NPR this AM the South FL leads the nation in Medicare fraud. It fits the pattern~Frankly
    Living in SoFla I can say (given my experiences and those of friends) that we probably lead the Nation in fraud period.

  6. According to the WFTV article, he may have “worked on” a patient who died:

    “A man is questioning what happened to his wife after hearing about the story. In the Kissimmee apartment they shared, Rafael Amely is mourning the death of his wife, Alma.

    Amely said that initially, he didn’t question if the teenager had treated his wife. However, later, he was approached by a friend who works at the hospital.

    “She heard that one person that this guy worked on had passed away,” Amely said.

    Alvarez also spoke with that same employee. She told Alvarez that one person treated by Scheidt had died.”

  7. Having been on the receiving end of medical “care” in Florida I am not surprised that an untrained 17 year old could pull this off – he probably could have been chief of surgery in a few places.

    Heard on the NPR this AM the South FL leads the nation in Medicare fraud. It fits the pattern

  8. I wonder if the is the new “Catch Me if You can” aka Frank Abagnale Jr……

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