Georgia doctor fails polygraph on sex with patients, gets suspended

The Georgia Composite Medical Board has suspended the medical license of Dr. Peter Ulbrich, a physician with a long history of sexual misconduct, according to a board order made public on Thursday.

Ulbrich had already been disciplined by the Georgia medical board for sexual misconduct when another patient complained about him last year. The patient said the doctor had made inappropriate comments during an office visit, pressed his crotch against her and touched her thighs when discussing liposuction, according to the disciplinary document.

In an evaluation ordered by the board, Ulbrich failed a polygraph test when asked about "sexual encounters" with current or former patients, the board said. He then admitted to sexual contact with four former female patients after he left intensive treatment in 2015 for his previous record of sexual misconduct.

Peter Ulbrich

That board concluded that Ulbrich's continued practice of medicine poses a threat to public health and safety and merited emergency action to suspend his license.

The medical board's order didn't even mention another part of Ulbrich's recent history: he was criminally charged in Cobb County in May with racketeering and theft over a scheme in which Ulbrich is accused of helping an unlicensed doctor practice medicine -- including surgery.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution could not immediately reach Ulbrich or his attorney for comment.

Ulbrich's license was suspended in 2010 over sexual misconduct involving patients. During his suspension, the board found he was paid to go to Botox parties where patients received injections by an unlicensed individual. Even so, the board lifted the suspension in 2011 and allowed him to practice under probation.

He was required while on probation to participate in treatment, undergo polygraph exams and use a female chaperone with patients. The medical board in 2015 lifted his probation.

Ulbrich was one of many doctors included in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Doctors & Sex Abuse series, an award-winning national report published last year.

The series prompted the Georgia medical board to conduct an internal review of its handling of sexual misconduct cases. The board announced in June that it would do more to protect patients from doctors who “use coercion or power for sex.” The board's plan included educating doctors, investigating all allegations and disciplining doctors with public consent orders and license revocations when allegations are proven.

Because this week's suspension of Ulbrich's license was an emergency action, he is entitled to an expedited hearing to contest the suspension.

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About the Author

Carrie Teegardin
Carrie Teegardin
Carrie Teegardin is on the investigative team. She is a graduate of Duke University and has won numerous national journalism awards.