Caitlin Gallagher
December 27, 2017 11:18 am
Getty Images/ Cultura RM Exclusive/Sigrid Gombert

Although a man pretending to be a doctor to find love sounds like it could be the premise of a romantic comedy, it’s actually pretty horrifying when it’s real life. In Brisbane, Australia, 25-year-old Nicholas Brett Delaney was arrested for posing as a doctor for the last six months. He pretended to be a doctor at two pediatric facilities, but he didn’t interact with the patients there (THANKFULLY). Instead, Delaney claimed his goal was to impress the male employees and get a boyfriend.

Since May(!!!!!!), Delaney has been posing as Dr. Nick Delaney at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital in Brisbane and the Ronald McDonald House, which provides temporary housing for families of hospitalized children, in South Brisbane. He allegedly had stolen an employee’s lanyard from the Ronald McDonald House and was using that to access staff-only areas.

Delaney’s real job is reportedly a “wardsman,” which is described as a person who would provide clerical or administrative assistance at a medical facility. He did not work at either Lady Cilento or the Ronald McDonald House though. And despite his experience in the medical field, Delaney was discovered as a fraud because a staff member noticed that he continued to mispronounce basic medical terms.

He was arrested earlier in December and faced court on December 21st where he represented himself. He pleaded guilty to three charges — two counts of entering premises with intent and one of attempted fraud — but the judge adjourned the case until January 29th and told Delaney to find legal representation.

Thankfully, a preliminary investigation showed that Delaney had not interacted with any of the patients while he pretended to be a doctor. “A review of security systems will be conducted at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital,” Fionnagh Dougan, the health service chief executive for Children’s Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service wrote in a statement.

Delaney is far from the first person to impersonate a doctor either in Australia or the U.S., but it’s a reminder of how necessary security measures are to protect patients. Although Delaney claimed he only wanted to find a boyfriend, he potentially put a lot of people at risk and these facilities should be grateful that nothing bad happened to any of the pediatric patients.

While Delaney might have been dreaming of the ultimate meet-cute scenario highlighted in so many rom-coms, he’s now living a nightmare that’s a far cry from the love story he was seeking. And let this serve as a reminder for all future rom-com scribes that the truth is always far more attractive than a lie.

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