The number of General Medical Council investigations into alleged impaired fitness to practice has increased considerably over the last few years.
Any allegations reported to the GMC will be reported, and at first stage a case officer will issue a Rule 4 letter outlining the complaint or allegations. Whilst a response is not compulsory, doing so allows doctors to address the allegations against them at the earliest stage.
After their subsequent investigation, the GMC will issue a Rule 7 letter setting out the evidence and allegations. The doctor under investigation then has 28 days to provide a response, with supporting evidence of their own. Crucially, this response will be considered when the decision is made on the outcome of the investigation.
It is imperative that legal advice is taken at the earliest opportunity. The four outcomes that the Case Examiner can reach are: close the case without action; issue a warning; impose or accept undertakings; or refer the matter for a Fitness to Practice (FTP) hearing. Therefore, not all investigations will lead to an FTP hearing, and acting decisively at the early stage can avoid later sanctions.
If your case has been referred to the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service for an FTP hearing, you can still influence the outcome by presenting a clearly structured case with quality supporting evidence. At Craig Gee & Co Solicitors we are experienced in advising and assisting clients with hearings should investigations progress that far. Getting in contact today can protect your interests, and safeguard your practice.
Call us today for a free no-obligation chat on 0161 666 9999 or email us. Arrangements can be made to see an experienced solicitor from 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 1pm Saturday.