Michigan Medicine physician Mark Hoeltzel is under investigation by a state licensing board for sexual misconduct, according to a statement from Michigan Medicine CEO Marschall Runge, executive vice president of Medical Affairs for the University of Michigan.
Michigan Medicine was notified of the investigation in early December and immediately removed Hoeltzel, a pediatric rheumatologist, from patient care duties. He has not been allowed to return to work, and his employment with Michigan Medicine has since been terminated.
Runge wrote Michigan Medicine reported Hoeltzel to law enforcement officials right away, and is cooperating with the investigation, which is already underway. An outside professional has been hired to review the matter.
“These are very disturbing and serious allegations, and we have reached out to our patients to inform them of the situation, offer resources and provide them with a way to report any concerns,” the statement reads.
The Michigan Medicine community was notified of the situation this morning in an email sent by Michelle Daniel, assistant professor of Emergency Medicine. She urged medical students to do everything possible to attend the meeting, as they would be divulging information about a former faculty member.
“We will be holding an urgent meeting today from 12:30-12:45 in West Lecture Hall,” Daniel wrote in the email. “We have important information to share about a former faculty member. We understand that some of you are in your Step Study period, and others are at clinical sites away from the main campus. If you are on campus, please make every effort to attend. Your faculty should release you for this time period.”
A letter was sent to all of Hoeltzel’s patients by Michigan Medicine, explaining Hoeltzel was under investigation for sexual misconduct and their child would be transferred to a different doctor.
“Your child is our top priority,” the letter states. “We understand that this information will be disturbing and a cause for concern.”
According to ClickOnDetroit, Hoeltzel was first accused of misconduct in 2004. He exchanged “flirtatious” messages with an 11-year-old girl he had examined at a U-M arthritis camp.
The hospital sent Hoeltzel to a “boundaries course” as a result.
No additional complaints were filed against Hoeltzel until December, when the state licensing board notified the hospital of the investigation.