A UHG doctor with seven allegations of professional misconduct against him, including that he sent inappropriate emails and texts to female colleagues, has told a fitness to practise committee he believes the way to treat women is “to pamper them”.
Dr Onada Olajide Onada (40 ), who worked as a senior house officer (SHO ) at University Hospital Galway from August 2010 to January 2011, told a Medical Council inquiry he was a happily married man and did not believe he had been inappropriate towards the women.
The case is to continue at the end of this month, after hearing evidence for several days, starting last week.
Dr Onada said a text message he sent to one of his colleagues, which said “thanks for the phone call before the meeting sweetheart – like the dress that you wore yesterday”, had no motive behind it. Using “sweetheart” was “just as good as using a smiley face”.
It was not inappropriate to comment on a doctor’s dress, as colleagues often told him they liked his tie, he said. If he had commented on her cleavage, accessories or mini-skirt, that could be said to be a personal comment. He saw his fellow SHOs in haematology, who were all female and “quite young”, as “baby SHOs”.
“I think the way to treat women would be to pamper them,” he said.
Dr Onada, who was not legally represented and agreed to give evidence on oath although he was offered the opportunity to give an unsworn statement, said he never asked any of the doctors to be his girlfriend or accepted invitations they had given him to the pub, to lunch or to coffee.
Referring to a separate text message that began “Hey Cutie”, he said it was “what people say all the time”, like “Hi love”. “It is a compliment and it means you are cute, there is nothing to that,” he said.
Dr Onada denied he had sent an email with a “Victoria’s Secret” image attached. It had been sent from his computer, but it was emailed at 5.19am on a Sunday when he was driving to the hospital from his home in Kilkenny.
He said it was possible “a maid” or someone else had accessed his computer and sent it for fun. He could not recall telling another doctor she had “an hourglass figure” and he was not sure he would have since she was “very skinny”.
He agreed he had been singing The Most Beautiful Girl in the World in the kitchen with nurses, but said it was in the context of discussions about karaoke at a Christmas party.
They had asked him questions about whether he had a wife or children, which could have been interpreted as inappropriate if a man asked them, he added.
Dr Onada was dismissed from the hospital after a series of disciplinary meetings.
The inquiry continues at the end of the month.