Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Australia's Dubious Dr. Jayant Patel

The Dubious Dr. Patel

Jayant M. Patel was born on April 10, 1950 in Jamnagar, India. Little has been published about his early life except that he came from a very wealthy family and showed interest in being a doctor early on. Patel studied hard in school. At 23, he earned a bachelor's degree of medicine and surgery at Shri MP Shah Medical College, an affiliate of Saurashtra University, AP reported. Patel then went on to earn a master's degree of surgery from the same school and began practicing soon thereafter. Foley quoted Dr. R.U. Mehta, a former mentor of Patel, who said, "in spite of the fact that he belonged to a powerful and rich family, Jayant was always modest and keen to work with the poor."

Map of India with Jamnagar locator
Map of India with Jamnagar locator

Not long after graduation, Patel moved to Rochester, New York, in the late 1970s and was allegedly an intern and resident of surgery at Rochester University School of Medicine, according to a report by the Medical Board of Queensland. He then moved to Buffalo, where he found a position at Erie County Medical Center as an assistant surgical resident. He eventually worked his way up and was granted the position of chief surgical resident.

In 1984, problems began to arise. BBC News reported that during that year, medical authorities criticized him on several occasions for not properly examining his patients before surgery. Consequently, a medical committee fined Patel $5,000 for negligence, gave him three years probation and suspended him from practice for six months, it was reported in the Khaleej Times. Amazingly, despite his negligence, the American Board of Surgery granted him certification to practice as a surgeon in November 1988.

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