Does Doctor Need Tennessee Alcohol Awareness Class?

by: Mike Miller

What could be more frightening than this: you’re lying on the operating table? The doctor who is performing the surgery leans over to introduce herself and you smell alcohol on her breath. She very well may be intoxicated.

This is a true story and scared me silly. A doctor who became woozy while performing surgery at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and tested positive for alcohol use has had her license placed on probation. As reported in

Colleen M. Brophy is a vascular surgeon and remains a faculty member at Vanderbilt. The probation period is for five years.

When Brophy became nauseated during a surgery another doctor had to complete the operation. Brophy registered 0.079 for alcohol on a blood test when she was taken to the hospital’s emergency room.

It is quite apparent this medical doctor is in need of an alcohol class and probably a drug class too.

She admitted to self-medicating depression symptoms with alcohol and drinking the night before the surgery.

Brophy understands she has a problem and is working with the employee assistance program at Vanderbilt and the Tennessee Medical Foundation to address any substance abuse issues. I hope she stays sober and finds a Tennessee alcohol awareness class to help her resume her career. There are plenty of rural facilities who I am sure would be willing to offer her a second chance.