Hornchurch osteopath struck off register after alleged 'sexual behaviour'

Concerns about governance and finances prompted the latest investigation, the Commission said.

Salah Said has been struck off the register by the General Osteopathic Council. - Credit: Archant

A Hornchurch osteopath has been struck off his professional register after he was accused of behaving in a "sexually motivated manner" with patients.

Salah Said worked at the Body and Spine Clinic in Hornchurch Road since 2006, but following an investigation by the General Osteopathic Council's professional conduct committee (PCC), it was decided he should be removed from the osteopath register.

Two of his patients had reported Mr Said to the police in the summer of 2019 - he was then charged with one count of sexual assault by penetration and one woman gave evidence at a Snaresbrook Crown Court trial in January 2019.

He was found not guilty and acquitted of the charge.

In June of that year, Havering Council started an investigation to determine Mr Said's "fitness to practise" and a witness statement was obtained from one of the women.

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The other patient drafted a statement but did not sign it.

The allegation considered by the PCC was that Mr Said had behaved in a manner that was "sexually motivated" while treating the two patients.

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It determined that Mr Said "abused his position of trust and the significant imbalance of power, in relation to both patients, for his own sexual gratification" and concluded that his behaviour was "abhorrent".

In deciding his sanction, the PCC considered the alleged exploitation of two vulnerable patients for sexual gratification and that the accusations related to a significant period of time.

The PCC determined that Mr Said "pursued a course of conduct in relation to two separate patients which involved skin-to-skin touching that was sexually motivated", including the alleged touching of one patient’s genitals and making sexualised comments.

In the hearing, a representative for Mr Said responded that the victims "seemed happy with what he was doing".

The PCC noted the alleged behaviour strikes at the heart of the patient-practitioner relationship.

Mr Said’s "conduct and behaviour, his attitudinal deficiencies, lack of insight and remorse and the absence of remediation giving rise to a risk of repetition were fundamentally incompatible with continued registration", the PCC said.

He was informed of the PCC’s decision on February 23, and did not lodge an appeal within the allocated 28 days.

This newspaper attempted to contact Mr Said for comment. 

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