Dr Charlie Teo hosted an event for his patients and supporters, just months after his surgical career was virtually destroyed by health authorities in Australia.
The embattled neurosurgeon, 65, was all smiles as he enjoyed a drink with guests at the Bright Night fundraiser at the Doltone House in Sydney on Thursday,
Guests paid $200 to attend the event while some were charged $500 to enjoy a one hour private pre-event function with Dr Teo.
Dr Teo wore a printed buttoned shirt and beige suit jacket as he chatted to attendees at the cocktail party.
The high-profile surgeon completed his look with beige pants and a black belt.
Dr Charlie Teo enjoyed Christmas drinks with his patients in Sydney after authorities virtually ended his surgical career in Australia
The event comes months after Dr Teo was found guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct by the Medical Professional Standards Committee in July.
The decision came in the wake of findings from the Health Care Complaints Commission (HCCC) that Dr Teo failed to properly inform two of his patients of the risks involved with ‘experimental’ operations that they failed to recover from.
The restrictions imposed by the HCCC has forced Dr Teo to admit his career is virtually over in Australia and to turn his attention to operating on patients overseas, providing advice to other neurosurgeons, and lecturing.
Dr Teo has previously indicated he will look to China to perform surgery because they had ‘committed’ to him, and would also continue to perform occasional operations in Europe and parts of Southeast Asia.
Dr Teo appeared before the committee to face complaints that he had operated on patients where the risk of surgery outweighed any potential benefits.
It was also alleged that he did not obtain informed consent from the patients before the surgery, charged another patient an inappropriate fee of $35,000 and spoke inappropriately, with several swear words, to that patient’s daughter post-surgery.
The committee ruled it had ‘found these elements of the complaint proven’.
The embattled neurosurgeon, 65, was all smiles as he enjoyed a drink with guests at the event at the Doltone House
It found that Dr Teo was guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct in 2018 and 2019 while operating at the Prince of Wales Private Hospital in Sydney.
The committee concluded in one instance he did ‘not exercise appropriate judgment in proceeding to surgical resection’ of Patient A.
In another, with Patient B, ‘the practitioner carried out surgery which was different to that proposed to the patient, and the surgical strategy led to unwarranted and excessive removal of normal functional brain’.
It was also found that Dr Teo’s ‘judgment in deciding to operate on Patient A was inappropriate (because) it was high-risk and inappropriate surgery by reason of the nature and location of the tumour, its genetic type, and that it was diffuse (spread over a wide area).’
Neither patient regained consciousness and both later died in hospital, one 10 days after surgery and the other several months later.
The event comes months after Dr Teo was found guilty of unsatisfactory professional conduct by the Medical Professional Standards Committee in July
The Medical Professional Standards Committee found that the surgeon had ‘for the most part, become isolated from the majority of his peers, and does not conform to a number of relevant accepted professional standards’.
The committee ordered that Dr Teo ‘be reprimanded and imposed conditions on his registration to protect the public’.
Now, the surgeon must provide a written statement from a Medical Council-approved neurosurgeon which supports him performing recurrent malignant intracranial tumour and brain stem tumour surgical procedures.
He has also been barred from working in the United States and Singapore.
The restrictions placed on the high-profile surgeon were met with criticism from his large base of supporters, some of whom are former patients.