Teenage medical impersonator suspect charged with six felonies

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 07, 2011 4:23 PM
Teenage medical impersonator suspect charged with six felonies

ORLANDO, Fla (Reuters) - A teenager who impersonated a physician's assistant and treated patients for two weeks at a Florida hospital has been charged with six felonies, according to a statement on Friday by prosecutors.

Matthew Scheidt, 17, will be tried in adult court on two charges of impersonating a physician's assistant and four charges of practicing medicine without a license.

Each of the charges is a third-degree felony which under Florida law is punishable by a maximum of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Scheidt was arrested on September 2. Police said Scheidt managed to acquire an employee access badge in his own name for the Osceola Regional Medical Center, a hospital located near central Florida's theme parks.

Police were told Scheidt performed CPR for five minutes on a cardiac patient in the emergency room.

He also allegedly performed a physical examination of at least one disrobed male patient, changed bandages on other patients, had access to patients' confidential medical records and attended their consultations with doctors.

Scheidt finally raised alarms among the hospital staff when he tried to gain access to other restricted areas of the hospital, police said.

At the time he obtained his hospital pass, Scheidt was working as a billing clerk at a Kissimmee doctor's office. Police said Scheidt told people in the emergency room he was a student from Nova University who was at the hospital to shadow physician's assistants as part of his clinical education.

(Reporting by Barbara Liston; Editing by Jerry Norton)